MDC activists face 10 years in prison

HARARE - The State yesterday said MDC activists accused of public violence in Epworth face 10 years in prison if convicted.

This was said by prosecutor Sharon Mashavira as she opposed bail, saying the jail term hanging over their heads might induce the suspects to abscond if released on bail.

Mashavira said the activists were not suitable candidates for bail.

The suspects are Antony Shangadeya, 52, Songi Chari, 32, Veronica Chinembiri, 35, Alex Makina, 33, Nyararai Chibindu, 52, Moses Chindanga, 26, Kholwane Makina, 26 and Emmerson Makahamadze, 27.

They were arrested after a rally held by opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai in Epworth on Sunday, with the State claiming they destroyed window panes, doors, chairs and tables belonging to Zanu PF supporters.

Mashavira said there were compelling reasons which justified the continued detention of the activists pending their trial.

She said the activists were facing a serious offence, which they allegedly committed under aggravating circumstances in that it was a politically-motivated attack.

Mashavira told Harare magistrate Tendai Mahwe that the penal provision for the offence that the activists are facing is 10 years. She said the State had overwhelming evidence against the activists.

Clifford Mugaviri, the investigating officer, said investigations were still ongoing in the matter and that he had not yet confirmed the addresses provided by the activists.

Mugaviri was subjected to a thorough cross examination by the activists’ lawyer Musindo Hungwe, who asked him to justify why he said his clients  were not suitable candidates for bail.

The group’s lawyer told the court during their initial remand day that the men had been ill-treated in police custody.

He said Chari and Kholwane had complaints against the police, pertaining to the selective

application of the law, adding that Zanu PF supporters were given first preference in the report of the assault.

Mashavira said the incident took place last Sunday, after Tsvangirai’s Epworth rally, when the group allegedly proceeded to Belapazi Farm.

According to State papers, the farm is a Zanu PF stronghold.

The group allegedly started assaulting Zanu PF supporters using bricks and stones.

The matter will be back in court today, when the lawyers continue making submissions in the bail application.

Comments (10)


daada - 9 May 2014

10 freaking years?

WepaHarare - 9 May 2014

and what happened to zanu pf supporters who came and attacked us at the rally and had to be dispersed by the police riot? selective application of justice and ZRP being asslickers for zanu has destroyed the leagl system in the country. I wonder if there is anyone who things its worth any note. Munyu wadurungunda uyu. I personally would urinate over such a justice system charactrerised by balatant favourism of one party and exaggerated punishment of other parties! Its a zanu justice system. same as one for Smith before.

Tongogara - 9 May 2014

Kanogwara katete aka 10 years nokuti ndeveMDC kuno kuMberengwa tinana Biggy Chitoro mhondi dzemhondi hadzina zvadzakaitwa . Ngakarege kuda promotion nokuda kuroverera hoko maCdes asina mhosva pfutseki mhani .

MukarangawekuMberengwa - 9 May 2014

"They will be sentenced to ten years in jail" We quickly think of what happened in 2008, when people were butchered in Mutoko some having their hands chopped off. Some left for dead.Some had their houses set on fire but not even one of the ZANU PF youths who were engaged in these acts was arrested and the system believes that we have completely forgotten about it. We haven't forgotten. No matter how many activists are sent to jail, the struggle continues.It is an old strategy as Smith tried it and failed, Both next door tried it and failed. Yonder Hitler tried to purge all the Jews but failed. So you see it will never work.No power can destroy the will of the people. What i believe is that " He who has power should use it lightly" Martin Luther King Jr said " Power properly understood is nothing but the ability to achieve purpose. It is the strength required to bring about social, political and economic change" Not to brutalize other people by denying them to exercise their constitutional rights. What were those ZANU-PF doing at the MDC-T rally?

SHAVA - 9 May 2014

Zanu-PF government is all about double standards. Zanu-PF thugs will kill and left to continue doing so as long as they do it in the name of the the party. Zanu-PF thugs started all this and they are safe in their houses today. Where are we getting it all wrong? Ian Smith's government was actually was better than Mugabes in every aspect. Mugabe spent 7 years in jail and came out healthy with 5 academic degrees which he studied and passed while serving a prison sentence. Who goes to prison for that length time and come back alive today?

Mbareboy - 10 May 2014

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