8 January 2019

Zimbabwe: Public Violence Accused ZCTU Bosses Challenge Trial

Photo: New Zimbabwe
Riot police clash with ZCTU activists in Harare (file photo).

Seven public violence Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) leaders have moved to throw spanners in the works of an earlier court decision to have them put before full trial over the alleged offence.

The unionists are being accused of participating in a gathering with intent to promote public violence October last year.

They are union president Peter Mutasa, secretary general Japhet Moyo, Simon Mutasa, Ezekiel Matema, Munashe Chirovamari, Benice Maluleke and Priscilla John.

Their trial was supposed to start on Monday but they told Harare magistrate, Joy Chikodzore that they have since approached the High Court seeking a review against Harare magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa's ruling.

Mugwagwa last year trashed their application challenging placement on remand saying they should stand trial and prove their innocence after they insisted that there was nothing criminal about their alleged conduct.

"We have also filed an urgent chamber application for stay of proceedings while we wait for the upper court's determination on our application for review," their lawyer, Alec Muchadehama told court on Monday.

"The application was filed on December 17 but the presiding judge, Justice Tagu had challenges with the writing so he has ordered that the record be transcribed.

"The upper court's prosecutor, Nyahunzvi consented to stay of proceedings and we hereby tender the consent."

The magistrate was hesitant to grant trial postponement but later agreed after the state indicated that it had no problems with it.

The case was postponed to January 28.

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