FLAMBOYANT Zimbabwean businessman Frank Buyanga Sadiqi, who was arrested in South Africa last Thursday for allegedly kidnapping his son, had his warrant of arrest cancelled by a Harare court yesterday.
The court said the warrant was issued in error.
Buyanga has been locked up at Sun City Prison in South Africa since Thursday. He filed an application for cancellation of the arrest warrant saying it was illegally issued.
Harare magistrate Judith Taruvinga heard the application yesterday where she admitted that she issued it erroneously.
The State, through Zebediah Bofu had opposed the cancellation of the warrant saying Buyanga was placed on Interpol’s red notice on July 7, 2020.
Bofu said the Supreme Court had confirmed it in the case of Buyanga versus Chantelle Muteswa under case number CCC14/21.
“The State is opposed to the application being heard and adjudicated upon on the basis that the applicant is an outlaw or fugitive from justice. Such a person is absolutely precluded from approaching any court for any relief, including the one which he is seeking.
“A fugitive from justice is a person who is a wanted in terms of the laws of the country and has fled from the jurisdiction of the court, and by so doing has set its laws at nought. He is aware of the issue, hence these proceedings. He has placed himself beyond the reach of the law and domestic apparatus to enforce that law by fleeing from the jurisdiction of the court,” Bofu submitted.
Bofu said Buyanga could not be allowed to enjoy the best of both worlds.
But his lawyer Admire Rubaya submitted that the magistrates court’s decision to grant the warrant of arrest was outrageous, defied logic and no sensible court having applied its mind would arrive at that.
“The said warrant of arrest cannot remain in force because it was irregularly issued. It has been abused and misused against him and his only recourse is to approach this court at this juncture for its cancellation,” Rubaya submitted.
He said it was a gross irregularity for the courts to entertain an application for a warrant of arrest from a police officer of a rank two sergeant, when the lower limit for those who are empowered at law to make the application is that of an assistant inspector who happens to be a person in charge of a police station.
“There is, therefore, sufficient basis for the honourable court to cancel this warrant of arrest. There was no basis for the court to issue another warrant in circumstances where the warrant already existed. It is brazenly clear that the decision of the magistrates court to issue a warrant of arrest against him on the facts before the court was completely wrong at law and hereto the court has already indicated that it relied on that order to issue the warrant in question,” Rubaya submitted.
Buyanga said when he left Zimbabwe; he had not committed the alleged criminal offences of kidnapping his son and robbery as spelt out on the warrant of arrest in question.
He said at the time of leaving Zimbabwe, he had not been invited to the police to assist with investigations.
Buyanga said the Interpol red notice was based on the irregular warrant of arrest emanating from the magistrates court.