Sikhala denied bail


Blessing Masakadza 



MDC Alliance vice chairperson Job Sikhala has been denied bail after the Magistrates Court ruled that he has a propensity to commit more offences. 

The Zengeza West legislator had boasted during his bail application that he had been arrested over 65 times and had no reason to abscond from the current charge of peddling falsehoods.

He argued that he is a proper candidate for bail, arguing the State’s case is weak and there was limited probability that he would be convicted.

However, Harare regional magistrate Ngoni Nduna ruled that the outspoken Sikhala should remain in  custody pending trial.

Sikhala is facing allegations of making false claims through Facebook by commenting on a viral video of a scuffle between a policeman and a woman in Harare last week.

Prosecutors allege he and other social media users were claiming that the police officer had killed the woman’s child by striking it with a baton.

Following the incident, police later released a statement saying both the woman and the child were fine, rebuffing the social media claims.

“This monstrosity in our country must come to an end.

“People are already suffering through a mirage of problems and you just take your baton and kill a nine-month-old child.

“We have reached a boiling point. This year igore rezvimbokoma (It’s a year of fighting). Wait and see. I swear with my dead mother,” Sikhala is alleged to have posted on Facebook.

Meanwhile, in a related matter, MDC Alliance spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere will spend the weekend behind bars with the court set to deliver a ruling on her bail application on Monday.

The court initially placed her on remand having dismissed her challenge against being placed on remand.

Prosecutors opposed her admission to bail saying she is facing a serious offence which attracts 20 years’ imprisonment if convicted.

The State indicated that evidence against her is overwhelming as she is not disputing making the tweets.

Before the hearing, the magistrate, Trynois Utahwashe received a report from the police responding to complaints made by Mahere.

The Harare lawyer was protesting the conditions at the holding cells she claimed posed a great danger to inmates of contracting Covid-19.

Mahere’s lawyers disputed the report saying it was a misrepresentation of what is on the ground and sought to have the court conduct an inspection in loco, which Utahwashe turned down.

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