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Mthwakazi activists fined for public hearing violence

by Staff reporter
10 Aug 2019 at 08:56hrs | Views
THREE Mthwakazi Republic Party (MRP) activists were yesterday fined $200 for engaging in public violence during a public hearing conducted in Bulawayo by the commission of inquiry led by ex-South African president Kgalema Motlanthe that looked into last year's post-election violence.  

Marshal Sibanda (40) of Emakhandeni suburb, Welcome Moyo (30) of Fourwinds and Venat Ncube (40) of Njube suburb were convicted of public violence or alternatively contempt of commission in contravention of section 14 (1) of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, by Bulawayo magistrate Ms Sithembiso Ncube.

They were each fined $200 or 30 months' imprisonment. The trio was further slapped with another three months in jail, which were wholly suspended for five years on condition that the accused persons do not within that period commit a similar crime.

"In arriving at an appropriate sentence, the court took into consideration the fact that you are first offenders. However, in aggravation, you disturbed a public hearing by a commission of inquiry by engaging in violence, forcing the meeting to adjourn. Although the accused persons have a constitutional right, that right cannot be exercised without limitations. The court will however, give you a second chance to reform by imposing a non-custodial sentence," ruled the magistrate.  

The trio was given up to August 31 to pay the fines through the clerk of court at the Bulawayo magistrate's court. The prosecutor, Mr Leonard Chile said on October 26 last year at about 1pm, the Motlanthe commission of inquiry into last year's August 1 post-election violence that resulted in the death of six people and destruction of property conducted a public hearing at a hotel in Bulawayo.

One witness, Mr Wisdom Mkhwananzi was given a chance to give his testimony.

Mr Mkhwananzi pointed at President Mnangagwa's portrait and remarked that he was "orphaned because the President killed his parents during Gukurahundi."

"A member of the public, one Mr Derrick Nkomo, who was part of the people in the gallery, interjected and challenged Mkhwananzi's testimony," said Mr Chile. Irked by Mr Nkomo's reaction, Sibanda, Moyo and Ncube, who were also part of the gathering during the hearing, confronted him. A heated argument ensued during which the accused persons assaulted Nkomo and threw chairs at him.

"The proceedings of the commission adjourned due to the disturbances and police had to be deployed to quell the situation and he accused persons were arrested," said Mr Chile.

Source - chronicle