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Biti applies for third recusal of magistrate in a stalingrad move

by Staff reporter
28 Jul 2022 at 06:34hrs | Views
In another bid to delay trial Tendai Biti today, for the third time, applied for the recusal of Harare regional magistrate Mrs Vongai Guwuriro Muchuchuti after she ruled that he should finish up his application for referral of his assault case to the apex court.

Biti is facing charges of manhandling a Zimbabwean investor Mrs Tatiana Aleshina at the Magistrates Court.

On Tuesday, Mrs Muchuchuti adopted a strategy whereby Biti's case would be heard on a daily basis after observing that he was playing a delaying tactic.

Since May 27 to date, Biti has been making the same application for referral of his case to the Apex Court citing that his rights were being infringed.

When the matter resumed yesterday, his lawyer Mr Alec Muchadehama said he was asking for a postponement because he wasn't ready due to the fact that he had been in court with Joanna Mamombe and Cecilia Chimbiri and had only adjourned at 1.45pm.

He also said his client Biti was also not ready for trial because he had been in the Supreme Court with a very serious case. He said Biti had to rush to court and therefore  had not had a chance to pick up his file at his office.

Mr Reza objected to the application saying it was clear that the defence just didn't want the trial to continue.

"Yesterday they put up a big fight refusing to have the matter remanded to today.

In the matter of State v Joanna Mamombe and Cecilia Chimbiri, which was held in the morning Mr Muchadehama had complained to the magistrate there that he was not in favour of remanding that matter in favour of the Biti case," said Mr Reza.

The magistrate analysed the submissions by both the defence and the State and ruled that the application for postponement by Biti was without merit and ordered that trial should continue.

Muchadehama then asked for a brief adjournment so that he could liaise with his client.

On resumption of proceedings Muchadehama said Biti wanted to make an application for the recusal of the magistrate because she was biased against him.

He told the court that this was the third application for her recusal that he was making. The matter was remanded to  Friday 29 July for continuation.

Source - The Herald
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