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55 000 petition Mnangagwa for Sikhala, Sithole release

by Staff reporter
26 Oct 2022 at 05:57hrs | Views
ABOUT 55 000 Zimbabweans locally and abroad yesterday petitioned President Emmerson Mnangagwa for the second time over continued incarceration of Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) legislators Job Sikhala (Zengeza West), Godfrey Sithole (Chitungwiza North) and 13 other Nyastime CCC activists.

The petitioners are seeking Mnangagwa's intervention to end the "political" persecution of Sikhala, Sithole and the 13, who were once 14 before one of them was granted bail.

The petition was generated on September 9 this year by the Platform for Concerned Citizens (PCC) whose signatories, among others, include academic Ibbo Mandaza, businessmen Strive Masiyiwa and Mutumwa Mawere, author Tsitsi Dangarembga, scholars Tony Reeler, Philani Zamchiya, politician Simba Makoni and Alpha Media Holdings chairman Trevor Ncube.

By yesterday, 54 757 had signed the petition, which was submitted to the Office of the President and Cabinet, Judicial Service Commission (JSC), Parliament, and National Prosecution Authority (NPA).

Sikhala and Sithole were arrested in June and charged with incitement to violence alongside 14 other party activists following violence at the funeral wake of murdered opposition activist Moreblessing Ali in Nyatsime, Chitungwiza.

They have been denied bail several times.

"Today, the Platform for Concerned Citizens presented a petition on behalf of 54 757 individuals who are concerned with the continued pre-trial detention of Members of Parliament Job Sikhala and Godfrey Sithole and 14 others," the PCC said in a statement.

"The online petition follows the presentation of the first version of the petition to the President, and the petitions, as a whole, express the disapproval of the continued abuse of judicial process in pursuit of political objectives."

Secretary for presidential communications, Regis Chikowore was not reachable for comment.

Acting Prosecutor-General Nelson Mutsonziwa said:  "I cannot comment off the cuff on the matter. I really have to look at the petition and see whether it is justified in regards to what the law says."

Source - Newsday Zimbabwe