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High Court Postpones Mawarire’s Freedom Bid To Wednesday

HIGH Court Judge Justice Clement Phiri on Tuesday 07 February 2017 postponed the hearing on a bail application filed by Pastor Evan
Mawarire to Wednesday 08 February 2017 to allow the State to respond to the clergyman’s freedom bid.

The High Court was initially set to hear Pastor Mawarire’s bail application on Tuesday 07 February 2017 after his lawyer Harrison
Nkomo of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights filed the application on Monday 06 February 2017.

But Justice Phiri on Tuesday 07 February 2017 deferred hearing of the bail application to Wednesday 08 February 2017 to allow the State represented by Edmore Nyazamba and Tapiwa Kasema of the National
Prosecuting Authority to file their response.

In his application, Pastor Mawarire asked the High Court to allow him to pay $100 in bail money, to surrender his passport and to report to Zimbabwe Republic Police officers once a week on Fridays until the matter is finalised.

Pastor Mawarire argued that there is no risk that he will abscond or commit other offences if granted bail.

The clergyman had to petition the High Court for admission to bail after Harare Magistrate Elisha Singano on Friday 03 February 2017 remanded him in custody after he dismissed an application filed by his lawyer challenging his placement on remand.

Nkomo had asked Magistrate Singano to release the clergyman after challenging the State’s request to place him on remand. In his application, Nkomo argued that the arrest and detention of the clergyman was illegal, unlawful and violated his constitutional rights. He also argued that the charges pressed against Pastor Mawarire did not amount to an offence.

But Magistrate Singano dismissed Pastor Mawarire’s application and remanded him in custody to 17 February 2017. The Magistrate advised Pastor Mawarire’s lawyer to approach the High Court for the determination of bail.

Pastor Mawarire was arrested on Wednesday 01 February 2017 by Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers upon his return to the country and charged with subverting a constitutional government as defined in Section 22 (2) (a) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23.

On Thursday 02 February 2017, the ZRP officers added more woes to Pastor Mawarire after they charged him with insulting the national
flag in contravention of Section 6 of the Flag of Zimbabwe Act Chapter 10:10 and inciting public violence as defined in Section 36 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23.

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