Deputy Prime Minister Thokozani Khupe’s driver, Witness Dube, appeared in court on Tuesday together with two other MDC-T activists facing charges of assaulting a fellow party member with an iron bar during provincial elections held in the city at the weekend.
Dube, who spent several days in police custody two weeks ago after being arrested over an issue connected to anti-sanctions petition papers, was gunning for the post of party provincial youth chairperson.
He was charged together with Ntonga Mhlanga (21) and Lloyd Chamboko (27) for allegedly hitting Clint Chigumbu on the head, leaving him for dead.
The three were not asked to plead when they briefly appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Ndumo Masuku.
They were remanded out of custody on $50 bail each. Dube was not formally charged or brought to court on the sanctions petition papers matter.
The state alleges that on Saturday afternoon MDC-T supporters in Bulawayo held their party provincial elections at the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union (ZCTU) offices in the city centre.
It is alleged Chigumbu briefly left the venue intending to buy sweets from vendors, just outside the ZCTU premises.
On his way back, Chigumbu was allegedly confronted by Dube and his alleged accomplices.
One of them, who is still at large, allegedly hit Chigumbu once on the head with an iron bar and he collapsed.
Dube, Mhlanga and Chamboko allegedly joined in the attack, and kicked him while he lay down.
Dube allegedly dragged Chigumbu to a secluded place where he tied his hands together with an electrical cord and continued assaulting him.
Chigumbu’s colleagues came to his rescue and took him to the police where they made a report.
Police attended to the scene and arrested the three.
Marilyn Muchina appeared for the state.
Meanwhile, the MDC-T has vowed to take disciplinary action against party supporters accused of causing violence at the party’s provincial elections last weekend.
MDC-T national spokesperson Nelson Chamisa told NewsDay on Tuesday that perpetrators of violence would be punished.
“We have received reports of various incidents in the provinces. We are yet to sit and interrogate those reports in areas where there is a need,” Chamisa said.
“We will also investigate allegations of violence, get to the bottom of the matter and root out those responsible. Violence is alien to our culture and whoever chooses to use violence as a way of attaining political power will face the music.”
The volatile Bulawayo province over the weekend held elections that turned violent, with youths fighting each other outside the venue of the polls.