Zvorwadza's busy court schedule

HARARE - Pro-democracy activist Sten Zvorwadza had a busy day at the Harare Magistrates’ Courts on Wednesday as he hoped from one courtroom to another attending to three different cases.

At 8am, the National Vendors Union of Zimbabwe (Navuz) chairperson appeared before the court answering to charges of threatening to burn Rainbow Towers Hotel during a demonstration against Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko’s long stay in the hotel.

The matter was deferred to October 11.

The militant activist then moved to court two for continuation of another case in which he is accused of acting in a disorderly conduct.

In that matter, prosecutor Progress Maringamoyo closed the State’s case, before Zvorwadza advised Vongai Guwuriro of his intention to apply for discharge.

Guwuriro will rule on the matter on October 14.

After the lunch break, Zvorwadza was not yet done with the court processes, as he appeared again before magistrate Bianca Makwande together with 13 others.

The 14 are accused of acting in a disorderly conduct emanating from a demonstration that they staged at Town House against municipal police’s alleged corrupt tendencies.

The case was postponed to November 8 for trial, before their reporting conditions were relaxed.

According to court records, on July 16, Zvorwadza was in the company of a group of vendors when they decided to demonstrate against alleged corrupt tendencies by municipal police.

The vendors were bitter that municipal cops “looted” their wares and shared among themselves, and in some instances would demand bribes to release the goods.

It was alleged that Zvorwadza and his members gathered at Town House in Harare holding placards that read: “Stop harassing women and children”, “Stop confiscating our goods” and “Zvemadhisinyongoro hatichada.”

The court heard that they were dispersed by police officers.

However, the court heard that when the vendors realised that police officers had left the scene they reportedly regrouped and returned to Town House led by Zvorwadza.

They reportedly demanded to see the town clerk or mayor and approached security personnel that were at the entrance.

The court heard that vendors reportedly attempted to force their way into Town House but were restrained.

This did not stop them from singing and blocking the way for people who wanted to enter the building and conduct their business.

Police officers returned to the scene and advised the group to leave, but the vendors reportedly held their hands together tightly and police had a hard time arresting them.

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