High Court Judge Joseph Musakwa early Thursday granted bail to incarcerated Sunday Mail editor Edmund Kudzayi who is facing charges of attempting to subvert a constitutionally elected government and undermining the authority of the president.
As part of his bail conditions, Kudzayi was asked to deposit $5,000 with the clerk of court, pay $200 bail for his second case of failing to secure ammunition. He will also be required to reside at his given address number 65 Brooks Drive Hillside Harare, report twice daily at Harare Central Police Station Law and Order.
Kudzayi was also expected to surrender his travel documents, not to travel beyond a 40km radius from Harare Post Office, surrender title deeds to his property as well as password to his gmail account linked to the Baba Jukwa Facebook page to the police.
The Sunday Mail editor, was arrested a fortnight ago and is jointly being charged with his brother Phillip Tawanda Kudzayi, allegedly linked to shadowy Facebook character Baba Jukwa regarded as a security threat.
Earlier on provincial Magistrate Vakai Douglas Chikwekwe had advised Kudzayi to file his bail application at the High court due to the serious nature of charges being levelled against him.
The state alleges Kudzayi connived with his elder brother Phillip, to hatch a plan to unsettle the government unconstitutionally.
According to court documents, Kudzayi planned and organised with some of his accomplices calling themselves The Gunda Nleya Brigade and Zimbabwe Revolutionary Army, to overthrow the government by ‘unleashing war’ and urged people to join the Zimbabwe Revolutionary Army through the Facebook page.
It is alleged Kudzayi posted articles on the page which reportedly encouraged rebellion against the government if the July 31 general election were ‘rigged’.
He allegedly created a gmail account entitled firstname.lastname@example.org with his brother, Phillip, and other accomplices yet to be apprehended.
Aided by the account, Kudzayi and his accomplices also allegedly posted articles to the effect that they had a Dare Rechimurenga in place and that a team was on the ground studying and monitoring the situation in Zimbabwe.
A number of people have been linked to the anonymous blogger including UK based The Zimbabwean newspaper publisher Wilf Mbanga and his wife Trish, a system and software engineer based in the United Kingdom (UK) Walter Shoko, a computer programmer based in the UK, Samson Chifamba, a Zimbabwean based in UK, George Chirakasha, Anomie Drew, Piniel Nhokodi, and Sarudzai Florence as well as South Africa based journalist Mxolisi Ncube.
On May 11 this year, The Sunday Mail, according to police, published a story about the identity of Baba Jukwa titled: Hackers unmask Baba Jukwa.
Police investigations, however, revealed that Kudzayi, the editor of the paper, was the one in control of the Baba Jukwa gmail account as his details were detected on the recovery panel of the computer system.
The police further highlighted that, according to their investigations, the account was never hacked.
The state also alleges that on August 7 2008 Kudzayi wrote and published an article on an online publication describing President Robert Mugabe as a tyrant.
The accused is also facing charges of not ensuring that his ammunition, recovered by police at his house, was properly secured.
He also faces charges of publishing or communicating falsehoods prejudicial to the state.