Constitutional Provisions (Zimbabwe)

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  • Every person is entitled to the protection of the law: 18(1).
  • Every person has a right to personal liberty, but a person can lawfully be deprived of liberty upon reasonable suspicion that he or she has committed or is about to commit a criminal offence: s 13(1) & (2).
  • Any person arrested on reasonable suspicion that he or she has committed or is about to commit a criminal offence must be brought without undue delay before a court and if the arrested person is not tried within a reasonable time, then, without prejudice to any further proceedings that may be brought against him, he shall be released either unconditionally or upon reasonable conditions, including in particular such conditions as are reasonably necessary to ensure that he appears at a later date for trial or for proceedings preliminary to trial: s 13(4).
  • Any person who is unlawfully arrested or detained is entitled to compensation from that other person or from the person who arrested or detained him or her or the authority on whose behalf or in the course of whose employment that other person: s 13(5).
  • Any person who is arrested or detained must be informed as soon as reasonably practicable and in detail of the reasons for his or her arrest and detention. Such person is also entitled to engage a legal practitioner to represent him or her and to hold communications with this legal practitioner. The arrested person must be permitted to see his or her lawyer without delay: s 13(3).
  • A person charged with a criminal offence must be afforded a fair hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial court established by law: s 18(2).



See Zimbabwe Criminal Defense Manual