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Lawyer flabbergasted at state

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The lawyer representing MDC-T MP for Mkoba constituency, Amos Chibaya, who is facing charges of assault and obstruction of justice, said yesterday he was stunned at the attempt by the state to delay responding to the defence’s Supreme Court application over the matter.

Chibaya turned to the Supreme Court where he is claiming his constitutional rights and freedoms were being violated by the charges made against him.

The MP is alleged to have assaulted a Zanu PF supporter and war veteran, Lovemore Hungwe, while in the company of MDC-T youths in December last year, allegations he denies.

Prosecutor Bonwell Balamanja yesterday told the court that the state still needed time to gather information from the police who handled the MDC-T MP’s case before responding to his Supreme Court application.

“Your Worship, the state still needs to gather information from the three police stations that handled Chibaya before it responds to the Supreme Court application made by the accused,” said Balamanja.

The state had on Monday said it would respond to the Supreme Court application.

Chibaya’s lawyer Reginald Chidawanyika said: “I am surprised the state says it still wants time to gather information before it responds to the Supreme Court application when we notified the court in December last year that we would proceed by way of application to the Supreme Court at the commencement of trial. I am surprised that the state is now buying time.”

Gweru magistrate Douglas Chikwekwe postponed the trial to Friday.

Chibaya told NewsDay outside the courts in Gweru that it had always been Zanu PF’s strategy to frustrate MDC-T officials whenever the issue of elections was mentioned.

“I am not surprised with this behaviour. It has always been Zanu PF’s strategy to frustrate MDC-T officials whenever there is a likelihood of an election. This is a simple matter of assault yet it’s being dragged like this,” he said.

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