Harare Magistrate Ngoni Nduna will tomorrow 26 August 2020 make a determination on an application by MDC Alliance national vice chairperson and Zengeza West legislator Job Sikhala challenging his placement on remand.
The combative opposition legislator was arrested on Friday last week and charged with incitement to commit public violence as defined in section 187 (1) (a) as read with section 36 (1) (a) of the Criminal law (Codification and Reform) Act (Chapter 9:23)
But his lawyers, Jeremiah Bamu and Harrison Nkomo of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) together with Advocate Eric Matinenga made an application on Saturday that the statements/utterances allegedly made by their client did not amount to inciting people to commit public violence as he was exercising his constitutionally guaranteed rights.
“It is important to note that the words alleged against the Accused in the request for Remand Form 242, are materially different from what was put to the Accused in his warned and cautioned statement. The words alleged against Accused also seem to have been taken out of the context in which they were allegedly uttered.
“In his warned and cautioned statement, it was put to the Accused that between May 2020 and 20 July 2020, he is alleged to have incited for public demonstrations that would cause public violence and breach of peace among people of Zimbabwe on 31 July 2020 by posting video clips with the following inciting messages,” argued the lawyer.
The state alleges that Sikhala made the following statements, “People of Zimbabwe l am here with my brother Jacob Ngarivhumwe, he is representing the citizens of Zimbabwe in the current situation in our country. I would like to tell everybody from Zambezi to Limpopo, from Forbes boarder to Victoria Falls that on the 31st of July 2020 it is your day. It is your day to speak out we have all agreed that we cannot accept corruption in our country . We are in total support of the actions that have been called on the 31st of July 2020. I am in arms in my brother here and we are going to make sure that on the 31st of July 2020 people of Zimbabwe will speak out.”