Thirteen individuals, including a reverend at Zaoga Forward in Faith Ministries, were arraigned before the courts yesterday for allegedly pelting a police car with stones.
Blessing Mwale, Sakina Masaraure, Thulani Mpofu, Raymond Maratu, Tawanda Murerekwa, Benedict Gova, Liberty Mutasa, Tafadzwa Chanetsa, Gilbert Chinyora, Shelton Moyo, Trymore Folani, Mathew Time and Wellington Tshuma appeared before Harare magistrate Victoria Mashamba charged with public violence.
The State, led by Sebastian Mutizirwa, opposed bail, arguing that the accused persons are facing a serious offence.
Mutizirwa said they committed the offence in aggravating circumstances and that they have a strong case against the accused persons.
“The accused persons were caught on the scene of the crime while committing the offence. I humbly submit that they are not proper candidates for bail,” Mutizirwa told the court.
Through their lawyer Sungai Sibanda, they argued that the police acted without due care and arrested ordinary citizens.
Sibanda said one of the accused Chanetsa, who is a student on attachment, was arrested at Africa Unity Square as he was coming from Nissan Clover Leaf Motors where he had gone to collect his recommendation letter.
“The State has used a dragnet tactic in arresting the accused persons,” Sibanda submitted.
However, Mashamba released them on $100 bail and ordered them to continue residing at their given address and report to their nearest police stations once every Friday.
Allegations are that on January 9 and at around 3pm, a police Mazda B1800 with 11 officers was on patrol in and around the Harare Central Business District (CBD).
Upon reaching corner Kwame Nkrumah Avenue and First Street, the police officers were confronted by a riotous mob which attacked and pelted the police with stones and bricks.
It is the State’s case that the police car was extensively damaged and its windscreen shattered.