Mpopoma-Pelandaba MP Samuel Sandla Khumalo (MDC-T) has been acquitted on charges of possessing mbanje after the court ruled the State had failed to prove a prima facie case against him.
“The State witnesses’ testimony is in disharmony,” ruled Bulawayo provincial magistrate Rose Dube.
“It is difficult for this court to believe any of them, all of them could be lying and there is surely no reason why one could concede to a possibility that the dagga could have been planted contrary to others’ testimony, if such possibility did not surely exist.”
Khumalo was arrested on March 4 last year and charged for alleged possession of 4, 5 grammes of mbanje valued at $4,50 in his vehicle.
The following day the police took him to his residence for further searches and allegedly recovered 40,5 grammes of the banned drug inside the lawmaker’s bedroom.
Earlier on Khumalo had been charged for pointing a firearm and threatening to assault two party members for reportedly decampagning him.
“How did they make a follow-up of a twist of dagga to the accused’s place of residence?
“How often do they make such follow-ups unless there is evidence that one is a supplier?
“However, the fact that the search was meant to find dagga and not a gun boggles the mind as to its purpose.
“Anyone can guess why that is so. It is my considered view that the State failed to prove a (prima facie) case against the accused and (he should) accordingly be discharged at the close of the State case.”
The legislator made an application for discharge three weeks ago through his lawyer Matshobana Ncube arguing the dagga was planted in his car and bedroom by the police as part of a campaign to persecute him politically.
Jerry Mutsindikwa prosecuted.