Tuesday 28 February 2023


CCC Chitungwiza North legislator Godfrey Karakadzayi Sithole yesterday lost his bid to have his trial on charges of inciting of public violence over the death of Ms Moreblessing Ali separated from the trial of fellow party member and CCC MP Job Sikhala on the grounds that Sikhala continually makes applications that delay the trial.

Harare magistrate Mrs Tafadzwa Miti dismissed Sithole’s application, saying he will not suffer any prejudice if he is jointly charged with Sikhala.

Through lawyer Mr Oliver Marwa, Sithole had applied for separation of trials arguing that Sikhala was continuously making court applications and there were thus indications that their trial might not start anytime soon. Sithole wants Sikhala as a defence witness and so it was prudent that they be tried separately.

The State led by Mr Zebadiah Bofu and Ephraim Zinyandu had opposed the application, arguing that it was impossible to separate the two as they had allegedly acted in common purpose when they allegedly committed the offence and so should be tried together.

The State also argued that it would be a waste of time and resources to prosecute the two separately, as the same State witnesses would be testifying against both.

In her ruling, Mrs Miti said Sithole failed to enlighten the court on the type of evidence that Sikhala would give as his witness.

After the application was dismissed, Sikhala, through lawyer Mr Jeremiah Bamu, was quick to notify the State of his intention to make another application for improper splitting of charges between his own two trials on charges of incitement to commit public violence and obstruction or defeating the course of justice.

Sikhala says the two sets of allegations arose from the same set of incidents that arose after the death of Ms Ali in Nyatsime area.

Mr Bamu notified the court that he will file a written application on March 3 with the State expected to respond on March 7.

Mrs Miti is expected to make a ruling on March 10.

In a separate case of obstructing the course of justice where he is appearing before regional magistrate Mrs Marehwanazvo Gofa, Sikhala challenged the tendering of transcribed statements extracted from the video he allegedly posted on social media with intent to hinder police investigations.

This was after the State led by Mr Bofu applied to tender into court record, statements through State witness Detective Assistant Inspector Hardwork Mazite.

Through lawyer Mr Bamu, Sikhala argued that the witness was not competent to produce the statement, as he was not its author.

Mr Bamu also argued that the statement was transcribed by an interpreter, and that the statement should be tendered through that interpreter.

The State contends that it can tender through Det Asst Insp Mazite, as he was the one who ordered the extraction of the video from social media.

Mrs Gofa is expected to make a ruling on Sikhala’s objection tomorrow. Herald


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