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  • Treason charges against Munyaradzi Gwisai & others - Index of articles

  • Munyaradzi Gwisai and others - Judgement postponed to 21 March 2012
    Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)

    March 21, 2012

    Harare magistrate Kudakwashe Jarabini on 20 March 2012 postponed sentencing convicted Munyaradzi Gwisai and 5 other members of the International Socialist Organization (ISO), namely anti-debt campaigner Hopewell Gumbo, Antonater Choto, the director of the Zimbabwe Labour Centre, student leader Welcome Zimuto, and social activists Eddson Chakuma and Tatenda Mombeyarara. The six were found guilty of violating section 188 as read with section 36 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act - conspiring to incite public violence.

    Defence lawyer, Alec Muchadehama today presented his submissions on mitigation and told the court that a non-custodial sentence of a fine of US$ 500 each should be imposed on the ISO activists. In his submissions he advised the court that the six had already been punished by the police who tortured them during the course of their arrest and detention, and had been detained in custody for at least 27 days before being released on bail. Further the lawyer submitted that the court had taken too long to hear the trial, impacting on their fundamental rights and freedoms, and that the six activists had not committed an offence which warranted imprisonment.

    Edmore Nyazamba represented the state and presented aggravating circumstances. He argued that the six should be given custodial sentences as they had committed a serious offence that needed to be severely punished, and which would serve as a deterrent to further similar offences.

    Before the court adjourned, Nyazamba made a weak attempt to have the six remanded in custody, but this was dismissed by the magistrate.

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