Madzore's bail hearing deferred

HARARE - High Court judge Felistas Chatukuta yesterday said she was not ready to deal with MDC youth leader Solomon Madzore’s bail appeal, since the papers were filed late.

“I am not able to hear both of you. I did not get the response yesterday (Monday),” she told Sharon Fero from the Attorney General’s office and Charles Kwaramba, Madzore’s lawyer.

The matter was deferred to today.

Madzore, accused of calling President Robert Mugabe a “limping donkey”, remained in custody despite magistrate Elisha Singano granting him a $100 bail, following the State’s notice that it was going to appeal against the ruling.

Prosecutor Munyaradzi Mataranyika last week invoked Section 121 of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act. The section suspends a bail order issued by a magistrate for seven days to allow the State to contest the decision.

In its notice of appeal, the State said Madzore should not have been granted bail.

“The learned magistrate misdirected himself by making a finding that respondent (Madzore) is a proper candidate for bail pending trial,” said Fero.

Kwaramba, on the other hand said the magistrate’s decision should stand.

“It is submitted that the appeal is totally without merit and must be dismissed,” said Kwaramba.

Madzore allegedly insulted Mugabe during an MDC rally held at Mushumbi Pools Business Centre in Guruve on April 27, this year.

The 38-year-old youth leader is accused of labelling Mugabe a “limping donkey, who is making it difficult for Morgan Tsvangirai (Prime Minister) to rule properly in the unity government”.

It is a criminal offence in Zimbabwe to insult the person or office of the president. Madzore is denying the allegations. - Tendai Kamhungira

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