Republic vs Mt 22512 L/cpl Newton Lazaro [1991] TZHC 22 (15 October 1991)


Samatta, J.K.: It cannot be disputed that most grievous injustice has been done to MT 22512 L/CPL Newton H Lazaro, one of the five accused in this case. On May 28, 1990, the man was acquitted by the District Court of Ilala of two charges namely, stealing by a person employed in public service, contrary to s. 265 and 270 of the Penal Code, and unlawful possession of offensive weapon, contrary to s.8(1) of the National Security Act, 1970. Two of I the man's co-

A accused were convicted and sentenced to imprisonment. The clerk who prepared commitment warrants in respect of the two men apparently mixed up the name of one of them with L/CPL. Newton Lazaro's name. The most disturbing result of that apparent gross negligence was that later l/CPL. Newton Lazaro was arrested and, no doubt to his utter disbelief, taken to Ukonga prison. He has been there, I am informed, for several months. This B purported imprisonment must be brought to an end immediately. Accordingly, there will be an order in the following terms:
The warrant of commitment signed by Mr. Kingambi Hyera, Resident Magistrate, on 28th May, 1990, purporting to C authorize and require the Superintendent of Ukonga Prison to receive MT. 22512 L/CPL. Newton Lazaro into his custody and there carry a sentence of five (5) years imprisonment into execution is hereby declared to be null and D void and therefore having no force in law. MT. 22512 L/CPL. Newton Lazaro be released from custody with immediate effect unless his personal liberty is otherwise lawfully assailed.
It is of the first importance that those who have the duty of preparing commitment warrants or approving them by E signing them exercise great care in discharging those very important duties. I devoutly hope that what has happened to MT. 22512 L/CPL. Newton Lazaro in this case will be a solitary tale in the administration of justice in this country.
F Order accordingly.


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