Seven MDC-T youths who were arrested in Mbare last Sunday appeared at Mbare magistrates’ court on Thursday facing charges of public violence.
The seven, Paul Gorekore (27), the MDC-T councillor for Mbare Ward 3, Kudakwashe Usai (22), Amon Mutasa (25), Muchafa Pfunhurai (30), Ephraim Purazeni (29), Patrick Chibhabha (27) and Lee Mutema (35) were represented by Jeremiah Mutongi Bamu who was being instructed by Tawanda Zhuwarara, both from Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.
Magistrate Rebecca Kaviya ruled there were no reasonable grounds to keep the youths in custody and remanded them out of custody to February 17. They were not asked to plead.
Prosecutor Pheneas Yaso said the MDC-T youths were at their Mbare offices behind Engen Service Station on Sunday when they allegedly attacked Elliot Munyama, Gerald Ticharwa and Givemore Kamhashu.
It is alleged the youths, who were cleaning their offices, saw the three complainants passing by their office and allegedly mistook them for Zanu PF supporters who had fought them previously.
The MDC-T youths allegedly attacked the three complainants by pelting them with stones.
It is said understood the complainants were later rescued by a police reaction squad which was nearby.
The MDC-T youths allegedly retreated and locked themselves up in their office, from where they were arrested.
Zhuwarara however argued during the bail application that his clients were not the aggressors as alleged by the state but were victims on the day in question.
Zhuwarara said the MDC-T youths were attacked by Zanu PF supporters who numbered between 150 and 200.
He told the court the MDC-T youths were taken by the police from their party offices to Mbare Police Station for protection but were later surprised when the police turned against them and charged them for assault.