Pastor up for stoning police officers

HARARE - A Heartfelt Ministries International pastor who was part of a gang of MDC supporters who allegedly stoned police officers in the city centre last week was granted bail yesterday.

Stephen Kalima, 32, was jointly charged with Joshua Chigwida, 32, Obert Chirape, 36, David Mazibiye, 45, Collen Mhizha, 30, Gardner Propedra, 30, Jesman Mwachande, 32, Kudzanai Maponga, 18, Wisdom Pemhiwa, 27, Gibson Marihoho, 31, Casper Charama, 20 and Tongesai Chirisa, 29, when they appeared before Harare magistrate Tendai Mahwe.

They are facing allegations of “participating in a gathering with intent to promote public violence and breach peace”.

The gang was yesterday released on $100 bail each, ordered to reside at present addresses and not to interfere with witnesses as part of bail conditions.

Prosecutor Idah Maromo alleged that on November 12 around 2pm, a group of 50 MDC members gathered at Harvest House to stage a demonstration.

It is the State’s case that the group started marching along Nelson Mandela Avenue towards First Street. They were singing and chanting slogans, the court heard.

It is the State’s case that they were waving placards inscribed: “Time to cry is over, it’s time to act”, “Stop violence or we will stop you”, “No to dark cities”.

According to State papers, the gang met a police reaction group and support unit team and started throwing stones at them.

The police managed to arrest 12 of them while the rest of the group fled from the scene in different directions.

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