FORMER Mutare West MDC-T MP Shuah Mudiwa appeared in court on Tuesday facing charges of convening an illegal campaign meeting in the run-up to the just-
ended harmonised elections.
REPORT BY OBEY MANAYITI
Mudiwa and a member of his campaign team Chemusina Tasweranazvo were jointly charged with contravening section 25 (1) (b) of the Public Order and Security Act (POSA) chapter 11.17 which criminalises organising a political meeting without police clearance.
The pair has denied the charge.
Mutare magistrate Noah Gwatidzo heard that on July 26 Mudiwa addressed a rally at Mashukashuka Business Centre without seeking police clearance. The two, however, claim they had notified a police officer identified as Constable Obert Maida based at Marange Police Station .
But, both Maida and Officer Commanding Mutare Rural, Police Chief Superintendent Ndofandaedza Jaboon, dismissed the claim, saying no such permission was given. Jaboon, however, acknowledged that police clearance could either be verbal or written, a position which was corroborated by the State’s second witness, Inspector Office Choga, the Officer-in-Charge at Marange Police Station.
Defence lawyer Chris Ndlovu insisted that his clients had indeed been granted police clearance and accused Maida of deliberately lying to nail down the MDC-T officials.
The trial continues tomorrow with two more witnesses expected to testify.
Mudiwa lost the seat to Zanu PF Manicaland Governor Christopher Mushowe.