A ZIMBABWEAN man, who was arrested on allegations of armed robbery in Botswana, broke into tears, while appearing at the Francistown Magistrates Court on Tuesday as he pleaded innocent.
Media reports state that Gabriel Mutaurwa (36) from Harare who has been locked up since July this year got emotional, broke into tears and screamed as he complained that he was being starved in prison after wrongful arrest.He insisted that he was not in Botswana when the alleged offence was committed.
Mutaurwa, who is incarcerated at Gerald Estates Centre for Illegal immigrants, begged the magistrate to listen to him, saying he was on a special diet prescribed by doctors.
“As we speak, your honour, I have lost 17kg of weight. I survive only on milk because it’s the only thing I can take according to my diet. The prison does not allow my family to bring food from outside,” Mutaurwa said while sobbing.He is one of three armed robbery suspects arrested at Tati Siding nearly three months ago.
He accused prosecution of failing to do its work properly, leading to his incarceration.
“I am an agronomist by profession and I came to Botswana for a job interview. All my papers are in order. During our arrest, I led the police to my rented room in Tati Siding where they searched and never found any guns or illegal items. I don’t understand why I was arrested. Am I being punished because I am a foreigner?”
He claimed that he was given a lift by one of the accused, Leaveit Ndlovu (30).Mutaurwa told the court that his wife and children, who live in Harare, were suffering in his absence. He said it cost his wife around US$160 (P2 000) to make the 1 270km round trip to visit him in Botswana.
However, the prosecution accused Mutaurwa of harassment and asked the court to intervene.
The court rebuked the prosecution for attempting to fast-track the matter.
Mutaurwa’s case is pending in the courts, while he remains in custody.