High Court sets Chin’ono, Ngarivhume bail rulings for Thursday
Harare, (New Ziana) – High Court Judge, Justice Tawanda Chitapi on Monday postponed to Thursday the delivery of judgement in separate applications for bail by two alleged leaders of the failed July 31 protests.
Journalist cum activist, Hopewell Chin’ono and opposition Transform Zimbabwe leader Jacob Ngarivhume were arrested on July 20 and charged for inciting public violence to force the removal of the government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The two have been in remand prison since then after the magistrates courts denied them bail, prompting them to turn to the High Court for relief.
The bail hearings were last week postposed to Monday as the record of proceedings from the Harare magistrates court were yet to be delivered to the High Court.
In compliance with the law, Courts are operating with skeletal staff for limited hours due to the Covid-19 nationwide lockdown and curfew, causing delays in some processes.
And on Monday Justice Chitapi separately heard arguments on the two cases from the state and defence, with prosecutors from the National Prosecuting Authority insisting the two were not proper candidates for bail.
Chino’no and Ngarivhume were respectively represented by Beatrice Mtwetwa and Moses Nkomo of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.
Prosecutors said the two had incited violence through social media, leading Ngarivhume to disown the Twitter account handle which the state was using as its evidence against him.
The defence dismissed the charges saying the two never called for violence.
“Justice Chitapi to hand down judgement on Hopewell’s bail on Thursday. In the meantime, he remains in remand prison,” the ZHLR said after the hearings.
The July 31 demonstrations flopped as people generally ignored the calls for the protests amid tight security around the country on the day.