MDC youths denied bail in petrol bomb case

HARARE - A Harare magistrate yesterday denied bail to three MDC youths allegedly behind the petrol bombing of Zanu PF Harare youth league chairperson Godwin Gomwe’s Budiriro house.

Tendai Muchekamanzu, 38, Stephen Dalaina, 26, and Victor Munhuwani, 36, appeared before magistrate Tendai Mahwe charged with malicious damage to property.

Mahwe said releasing the trio would trivialise the case and remanded them in custody to May 19.

“Offences of this nature are on the rise and it would not be in the interests of justice to release the accused persons,” he said.

“There is high likelihood that they will abscond court proceedings, accused persons are therefore not perfect candidates for bail.”

Prosecutor Sharon Mashavira opposed bail on the basis that the trio would jeopardise the justice system if released.

“Accused persons are facing a very serious offence and if convicted (will get) a severe sentence. This will induce the accused persons to flee the jurisdiction of this court.

“The third accused person is actually wanted over a 2011 murder case and has been on the run for the past three years. Such a person is not a good candidate for bail.”

Muchekamanzu, Dalaina and Munhuwani were represented by Gift Mtisi.

Mtisi argued that the State did not thoroughly investigate the case before arresting his clients.

“When this offence was committed, two of the accused persons were in Masvingo and the other one in Norton,” Mtisi argued.

“The police were reluctant to conduct an identification parade because they knew witnesses would fail to identify the accused persons as perpetrators of the offence.

“…no wonder why police preferred to pursue a public violence case yet there is a murder case, which is more serious, that they allege one of the accused persons is wanted for.”

Mashavira alleged that in April this year, the accused persons and their accomplices who are still at large went to house number 23775 Budiriro 5B in Harare.

They allegedly got into the yard through an unlocked gate and threw petrol bombs aiming at Gomwe’s dining room.

After noticing that the bombs had failed to ignite and explode, they allegedly started throwing stones and broke window panes.

According to State papers, Gomwe’s neighbours saw accused persons committing the offence.

 

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