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27 mourners granted bail
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)

May 24, 2011

Harare Magistrate Reward Kwenda on Tuesday 24 May 2011 granted bail to 27 residents of Kuwadzana and Marlborough suburbs of Harare, who were arrested last week on their way from the burial of their relative and charged with public violence for allegedly assaulting some ZANU PF supporters and some new farmers.

Magistrate Kwenda freed the mourners after their lawyers Gift Mtisi of Musendekwa and Mtisi Legal Practitioners and Tarisai Mutangi of Donsa-Nkomo and Mutangi Legal Practitioners, who are members of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights applied for bail when they appeared in court on Monday 23 May 2011.

State Prosecutor Sidom Chinzete opposed the bail application and argued that the nature of the offence committed was serious and that the release of the mourners on bail would endanger the safety of the public.

But Magistrate Kwenda threw out the State's assertions and ruled that the interests of justice will not be prejudiced by the admission of the accused persons to bail.

The Magistrate ordered the 27 mourners to deposit $20, continue residing at their given residential addresses and not to interfere with State witnesses.

The 27 mourners who include Pastor Dominic Dziwedziwe (36) of Kuwadzana, Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Harare Province Vice-chairperson Shakespeare Mukoyi were arrested on Thursday 19 May 2011 and charged with contravening section 36 (1) (a) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23 while coming from burying the body of an MDC activist Jack Ndeketeya at Granville cemetery, who had passed away early last week.

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