D-Day for Sikhala

Blessing Masakadza

MDC Alliance vice chairperson Job Sikhala will know his bail application fate today when Harare magistrate Lazini Ncube is expected to deliver a ruling.

Sikhala, through his lawyers Eric Matinenga, Harrison Nkomo and Jeremiah Bamu, said he is a proper candidate for bail, disputing the State’s position that he should be remanded in custody.

The State claims he was in hiding for close to a month and his conduct shows that he will abscond if he is released on bail for allegedly inciting public violence during the foiled July 31 protest.

Sikhala said he was never on the run as he was not aware the police were on the hunt for him.
He said he has faced several and more serious allegations than the present case.

Sikhala said he was recently acquitted of treason, in which he attended trial while on bail.
Sikhala claimed he even called the police inquiring if he was wanted and even sent his lawyer, Beatrice Mtetwa, to verify and she was told that the police were not after him.

He even disputed claims that he was hiding in a ceiling when he was arrested almost a fortnight ago at Tynwald house in Harare.

His lawyers argued that messages in the videos produced by the State show him disclosing his location, which is not consistent with someone on the run.

The State, led by Garudzo Ziyaduma, insisted Sikhala was evading arrest and that he went into hiding when he knew the police were looking for him.

The State said there was no cooperation from people at the Tynwald house where Sikhala was allegedly hiding in a ceiling.

The State also argued that the police made a press statement which was flighted on television and again there was no cooperation from Sikhala.

They further argued that even attempts to locate him at his rural home were in vain.
It is their argument that he will commit further offences if he is released as he has pending cases at St Mary’s Police Station.

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