Monday 3 June 2024


The Supreme Court has ruled that a High Court judge cannot preside over the murder trial of a colleague’s son.

Christopher Dube-Banda was presiding over the trial of Munyaradze Mawadze when he was asked to recuse himself. He refused insisting that he will be impartial. Mawadze then appealed to the Supreme Court.

The court said that a retired or foreign judge should be considered for fairness.

“Undoubtedly the learned judge, owing to his conduct and utterances, objectively displayed unmistakable characteristics of apparent bias as already stated elsewhere in this judgment.

“An impartial and neutral judge does not foist a legal practitioner on a litigant. He or she does not blame a litigant for requesting his or her recusal. Neither does he give a litigant inadequate notice for trial nor endeavour to proceed with a matter in the face of an unresolved pertinent notice to appeal.”

“We accordingly hold that there is merit in the appellant’s appeal.”


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