Inspection of condemned cells deferred

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The inspection of cells at Chikurubi Maximum Prison which alleged attempted jail-breakers have described as inhabitable has been deferred to next Wednesday.

Judicial officers, including a regional court magistrate, a prosecutor and lawyers involved in the trial of the accused men, are scheduled to do an inspection in-loco inspection of the cells to verify the accused’s claims.

The court officials had initially planned to inspect the condemned cells known as FB1 on April 12, but failed due to the nationwide strike by magistrates.

The inspection follows an application by the defence team of Charles Warara and Gift Nyandoro in terms of Section 24 of the Constitution.

Warara argued on behalf of Albert Mugove Matapo and Luck Mhungu saying the state was violating constitutional rights of his clients and wanted the case referred to the Supreme Court for determination.

State prosecutor Michael Reza opposed the application.

However, Warara insisted he wanted the Supreme Court to determine whether it was constitutional for accused persons to appear in court wearing labelled clothes and in leg-irons.

He argued that Matapo had been subjected to conditions akin to punishment without trial since his arrest four years ago.