Mugabe insult trial flops

GWANDA – A former MDC councillor in Gwanda — Themba Nyoni — is off the hook after a magistrate removed him from remand roll and suspended his trial over charges of insulting President Robert Mugabe.

The 49-year-old had been put on trial facing charges under Section 33 (2) (b) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:27.

On Wednesday, he appeared at Gwanda Magistrates’ Court where he was set free.

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Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights’ Lizwe Jamela argued that Nyoni had not committed any offence to warrant him to be put on trial.

Prosecutor, Blessing Gundane, concurred with Jamela.

The State will now have to proceed by summons, if it decides to reinstate the charges.

Nyoni was arrested on January 28 this year after he allegedly told Rural Development minister, Abedinico Ncube, that Mugabe was too old and should consider stepping down from his position as the leader of the country.

He reportedly said this in the Ndebele dialect: “Mina angisoze ngi-join Zanu PF, hambani liyetshela uMugabe a-step down kuthi ngize ngijoine iZanu PF (Go and tell Mugabe to step down so that I can join Zanu PF).”

This reportedly incensed Ncube, who reported Nyoni to the police who immediately arrested him.

Jamela said that while the ex-councillor’s bail conditions have been dropped, he could anticipate what the prosecution’s next move will be.

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