THE High Court is tomorrow set to hear a fresh bail application by former Bikita West legislator Munyaradzi Kereke who is serving a 10-year prison term for raping a teenage niece at gunpoint.Justice Herbert Chitapi deferred the bail hearing to allow the private prosecutor to prepare his response to the request.
Kereke, through Advocate Thabani Mpofu, launched a fresh freedom bid following the intervention of his estranged wife, who offered to accommodate him and to fund a house arrest pending determination of his appeal.
He wants to be released on bail pending determination of his appeal against both conviction and sentence.
Alternatively, he is seeking an order placing him under house arrest at his own expense.
His estranged wife, Ms Elizabeth Sibanda, has also undertaken to surrender the title deeds to her Mandara property as surety to secure his freedom.
Last month Justice Happias Zhou threw out Kereke’s initial bail application on the basis that the politician was not a proper candidate for temporary freedom.
In the same judgment, the judge also indicated that Kereke’s prospects of success on appeal were high.
In the fresh application Kereke submitted that Ms Sibanda had offered her Mandara property measuring 1,1 hectares as surety.
Another couple, Mr Arnold Chidhakwa and his wife Barbara, offered another property as surety, Stand 694 Bannockburn Township of Stand 1 Bannockburn, Harare.
Regional magistrate Mr Noel Mupeiwa sentenced Kereke to 14 years behind bars but set aside four years for five years on condition that he does not commit a similar offence within that period.
The court, however, acquitted him on charges of indecently assaulting the victim’s elder sister.
Kereke still insists that the charges he was convicted of were fabricated by the complainants’ maternal grandparents after he refused to pay their school fees arrears, but Mr Mupeiwa said at the time the case was reported to the police, the arrears had already been settled. Herald