RESIDENTS ACQUITTED OVER ELECTIONS-RELATED BOREHOLE FRACAS

RESIDENTS ACQUITTED OVER ELECTIONS-RELATED BOREHOLE FRACAS

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CHITUNGWIZA Magistrate Sheunesu Matova has acquitted five residents including Beven Murada, the Councillor for Ward 20, who had been on trial after they were arrested during an alleged fracas with some ruling ZANU PF political party supporters, at a borehole in the run-up to last year’s harmonised elections.

Councillor Murada and Saul Chidanguro, Wilbert Chimbwedza, Solomon Savanhu and Blessed Kudakwashe Mutseka, who were members of his political campaign team, were arrested on 26 July 2023 in Unit L suburb in Chitungwiza during the run-up to the 2023 harmonised elections and charged with public violence as defined in section 36(1)(a) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act.

During trial, prosecutors alleged that the five residents, who were represented by Tapiwa Muchineripi of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, had connived as a mob and went and disrupted and assaulted some ruling ZANU PF political party supporters who were reportedly attending a meeting at some borehole in Unit L suburb.

But on Thursday 11 April 2024, Magistrate Matova set Councillor Murada, Chidanguro, Chimbwedza, Savanhu and Mutseka free by discharging and acquitting them at the close of the prosecution case, after ruling that prosecutors had failed to prove a prima facie case against the five residents as there were no essential elements proven for the offence they were charged with.

ENDS

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