MDC organising secretary and Mkoba constituency legislator Amos Chibaya who is facing charges of contravening the public order and security act will spend the weekend in remand prison after a Harare magistrate said she would rule on his application for bail on Monday
Chibaya appeared before Magistrate Learnmore Mapiye facing charges of contravening the public order and security act.
He is accused of not stopping “the public from engaging in demonstrations when he had a legal duty to do so.”
Prosecutor Charles Muchemwa opposed the granting of bail basing on the gravity and nature of the charges the accused was facing.
“The court should be guided by the nature of the offense that the accused person is facing,” Muchemwa said.
“The state fears that the accused will abscond if granted bail and that the accused sentence is that of the custodial sentence,” he continued.
Muchemwa also submitted that Chibaya is on remand at the Gweru Magistrate where he is facing charges of subverting a constitutionally elected government and hence the state fears that if the accused granted is bail he is likely to commit a similar offense.
In responding to the application Chibaya’s defense counsel of Jeremiah Bamu and Obey Shava laughed off the state’s sentiments saying Chibaya is facing an offence with an option of a fine.
“The accused person is facing charges with an option of fine,” Shava told the court.
“The court should consider the characters of charges in determining whether the accused will abscond or not,” he continued.
The defense counsel further indicated that the state witness being the investigating officer has failed to tell the court what part of the prohibition order the accused person violated.
“The investigating officer has failed to tell the court what part of the prohibition order was violated by the accused person and hence no reason placed before the court that the accused person would run away from charges that do not exist,” said Shava.
Allegations are that on August 15 Chibaya was served with a prohibition notice to stop the public from demonstrating.
The court heard that, however, on August 16 Chibaya convened a public demonstration in defiance of the said prohibition notice by the regulating Authority of Harare central police district.
It is the State’s case that Chibaya as the convener of the public demonstrations, failed to comply with the prohibition notice.
The failure arising from the point that Chibaya did not stop the public from engaging in the public demonstrations when he had a legal duty to do so, the court heard.
The matter was remanded to August 26.