Bindura lawyer Ernest Jena, who spent the weekend behind bars for allegedly insulting or undermining the authority of President Robert Mugabe and the police, was yesterday released on free bail.
Jena was arrested last Wednesday after he had presented himself to the police.
On December 9, 2011 at about 4pm, Jena was allegedly drinking beer at Kimberly Reef Hotel, Bindura when he saw Detective Constable Zisengwe of CID Bindura, who was looking for Bindura magistrates’ court public prosecutor Tendai Deya.
He allegedly called Zisengwe to where he was sitting and reportedly said: “I know that you are a detective attached to CID Law and Order. I want you to arrest me now if there is an offence.”
He also allegedly insulted and demeaned President Mugabe.
His lawyer Chris Mhike said his client was mistreated while in custody.
“Jena, like many other inmates who were detained at the same time as him, was detained under inhuman and degrading conditions,” said Mhike, adding his client endured “unnecessary detention for four nights, incarcerated beyond the 48 hours that are permitted under law”.
Many Zimbabweans have been arrested over a similar charge.
Most prominent was the arrest in June this year of Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office Jameson Timba.
Allegations against Timba were he had told a local weekly President Mugabe “lied” about the outcome of the Sadc summit in South Africa.