Mangoma 'attackers' falsely accused: Defence

HARARE - Officers investigating the Harvest House assault of MDC deputy treasurer Elton Mangoma falsely
implicated accused persons before conducting thorough investigations, a magistrate heard yesterday.

Francis Mafimbidzofa, 38, Enock Mukudu, 31, Stefani Tafadzwa Jahwi, 36, Samson Tumai Nerwande, 41, and James Chidhakwa, are accused of assaulting Mangoma after he called for the ouster of opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai ostensibly because he was now a hard-sell candidate after losing three presidential elections against President Robert Mugabe.

It is the State’s case that on February 15, Mafimbidzofa, Mukudu, Jahwi, Nerwande, Chidhakwa and others still at large, waylaid Mangoma outside Harvest House and allegedly assaulted him with open hands and clenched fists. Douglas Mwonzora, representing the alleged assailants, yesterday told Harare magistrate Tendai Mahwe, that one of the investigating officers, Shadreck Rego, falsely accused the alleged assailants at the instigation of Mangoma.

Mwonzora alleged Rego was not aware of important dates and some of the accused persons’ names, and implicated them on a matter that they did not commit following a police raid on Harvest House, where officers left a list of the “wanted persons”. Mwonzora delivered the accused persons to the police.

“You are mistaken regarding dates, you did not look for the accused but I brought them to your offices in the company of another lawyer”, Mwonzora said.

“No identification parade was done and someone else actually told complainant that these four were the ones who assaulted him. You completely relied on the informant’s information, whose motive is not known to us.”

Mwonzora produced a video clip recorded on the day of the alleged assault to dispel claims that the

accused persons were the attackers. Rego objected to production of the video clip, claiming it was recorded from a smart phone not CCTV. Rego claimed the footage was meant to mislead and divert investigations.

Prosecutor Sharon Mashavira also opposed tendering of the video as evidence saying it does not clarify anything in relation to the assault. “We got sight of the video clip and it only shows a part where Mangoma was leaving Harvest House and doesn’t show the part where the complainant was assaulted”, she said.

She said the offence being faced by accused persons was politically motivated and must attract a harsh penalty.

“While we are fighting as a country to have peace, the accused engaged in political violence which makes the offence very serious”, Mashavira said. “In order for the State’s case not to be frustrated and for proper administration of justice, accused should be remanded in custody pending trial.”

The State is opposing the accused’s admission to bail on the basis that accused persons do not own valuable property and are not permanently employed. The State also fears that the accused persons, who all work at Harvest House, were likely to interfere with witnesses if freed on bail.

The matter was stood down to today, while the accused remain behind bars.

Comments (8)

Hee CCTV heee CCTV, What? Evidence is evidence. Should video evidence only come from CCTV?

Bla Njanji - 5 March 2014

Asi imi munoti mangoma akanyatsorohwa zveshuwa here?Kurohwa uchisara uine pen muhomwe?Ukanyatsorohwa grade kwaro haupaparike zvauri kuita izvi Mangoma.Bvunza Tsvangirai muna 2007?

Chikata - 5 March 2014

The major witness to this case is Morgan Richard Tsvangirai. He was there when Mangoma was being clobbered. Surely he can identify the culprit(s).

Teabag Masamba - 5 March 2014

Teabag, jus be patient, thats where the case is heading to, chokwadi chinongozobuda kuti akatuma ndiyani. and thts why the state doesent want these guys to be given bail so they dont interfere wth investigations

wacho - 5 March 2014

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Natural Herbs - 6 March 2014

The British, Australian and American Embassies are saying Tsvangirai is now hard to sell. hahahaha. He does need American, Australian or British votes like Biti, Mangoma and Mudzuri. We Zimbabweans of various political parties including me weZANU PF are going to kanzatu kanzatu and fund him. Shame on you puppets Biti, Mangoma and Mudzuri. We also welcome Tsvangirai to reality!!! KKkkkkkkkest!!

Courage - 6 March 2014

He does not need....sorry for the mistake

Courage - 6 March 2014

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