‘Justice Patel safe’

The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has dismissed as false social media reports that Justice Bharat Patel, a Constitutional Court judge, survived an assassination attempt over the weekend.

Reports circulating on Twitter and WhatsApp platforms purports that the judge and his family were now living in danger and that they had sought sanctuary at the United States Embassy in Harare.

JSC acting secretary Mr Walter Chikwana dismissed the reports as false, saying the judge and his family were safe.

Mr Chikwana said Justice Patel was even shocked at the unfounded claims.

“I can confirm that the judge is safe and sound,” he said.

“The report is false. The judge is safe and sound and I have just spoken to him now.”

Mr Chikwana warned the public against peddling falsehoods, saying it was a criminal act.

Peddling of falsehoods has become rife ahead of the sitting of the Constitutional Court on Wednesday to hear and determine the election petition by MDC-Alliance leader Mr Nelson Chamisa.

Chief Justice Luke Malaba last week had to dismiss a bogus Twitter account “@LukeMalaba” created by fraudsters.

The fraudsters had duped the public into believing that the judiciary head was running the Twitter account which has a picture of High Court judges wearing their regalia.

The account was created this month and by Thursday last week, it had registered 40 followers.

The account purports to have been created by the Chief Justice and his picture in court regalia was attached to mislead the unsuspecting public.

Chief Justice Malaba denied owning a Twitter account and warned the nation against being misled by statements posted on the bogus account.

He urged the nation to disregard the tweets, saying he was not on Twitter.

“Members of the public are accordingly advised that any comments appearing on the account which have been or may in future be attributed to the Chief Justice are not his,” read a statement from the Chief Justice’s office.