Govt challenges public to identify accused soldiers.

Bernard Mutambudzi.

Deputy Defence Minister, Victor Matemadanda yesterday urged the public to come forward and positively identify soldiers whom they accuse of raping women during last week’s violent demonstrations.

MDC Alliance Masvingo Senator, Tichinani Mavatera during the question and answer session in the Senate yesterday, asked Cde Matemadanda on what the Government was doing on the crimes alleged to have been committed by soldiers.

Minister Matemadanda said, “Government is requesting the public to come forward and positively identify the culprits, if ever there were serving members of the security forces that committed any crime, in security terms we have what we call “identification parades.”

He added that the army was ever willing to avail identification parade as it has nothing to hide from the public.

“The army is actually there for the service of the people, it remain accountable to the people it serves,” said Matemadanda.

Zimbabwe Defence Forces Chief of Staff, Major General Douglas Nyikaramba said the army was ready to pull out soldiers deployed to assist the police in the maintenance of law and order subject to confirmation from the enforcement agency.

He said ZDF would, however; institute investigation into allegations of gross misconduct and human rights abuses against its members and those found guilty would be dealt with in terms of the law, but was quick to say that those caught could be rogue elements that deserted from the force.

He reiterated that the country has one of the most respected security forces who are called for international duties.