Zanu PF Supporters Remain in Custody as State Opposes Bail in Illegal Demonstration Case
A group of Zanu PF supporters, who were arrested for participating in an unlawful demonstration at the Shake-Shake building, the party’s national headquarters in Harare, spent the weekend behind bars after the State objected to their release on bail.
The supporters appeared before Harare magistrate Apolonia Marutya last Friday, where prosecutor Takudzwa Jambawu argued against granting them bail. Jambawu acknowledged that while the supporters had a right to bail, this right was not absolute. He further contended that they were facing charges of public violence and posed a potential risk to public safety.
Jambawu stated, “There is an indication that the accused were warned by police to stop chanting slogans and the State is of the view that if the accused are released on bail they may repeat the same offence.”
Due to the absence of the investigating officer, Inspector Samuel Matsekwa, who had an urgent family matter to attend to, the proceedings were adjourned.
However, the supporters’ lawyer, Tonderai Chikosha, challenged the adjournment, asserting that the case could proceed since the investigating officer had already submitted a signed affidavit.
The bail application has been postponed until tomorrow to allow for the investigating officer’s presence.
According to the allegations, on September 19 of this year, 12 Zanu PF members unlawfully disrupted the peace, security, or order by disregarding a police order to halt their demonstration against the ruling party’s top leadership in Harare province.