By Shamiso Dzingire
MDC deputy president Morgen Komichi was yesterday fined $200 after being convicted of disrupting electoral proceedings during the announcement of presidential election results.
Harare magistrate Ruramai Chitumbura convicted Komichi — who was accused of invading the podium at the Harare International Conference Centre where he grabbed the microphone and announced that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) was announcing fake presidential results.
In default, Komichi will spend two months in jail. Komichi paid the fine. Chitumbura further slapped Komichi with a three-month sentence wholly suspended for five years on condition that he does not within that period commit a similar offence.
In passing judgment, Chitumbura said the State managed to prove a prima facie case against Komichi and that indeed he disrupted the announcement of the results. Komichi had applied for discharge at the close of the State’s case, an application that Chitumbura dismissed and ruled that trial proceeds to the defence case.
Dismissing the application, Chitumbura said after hearing the State’s case, it was not in dispute that Komichi rose to the podium and announced that the results were fake.
“What is left is to determine whether the accused person disrupted the electoral proceedings. Though both counsels defined the meaning of the word, the court resorted to the dictionary meaning of the word as is does not exist on the Electoral Act,” she said then.
It was Komichi’s argument that the State did not lead any evidence addressing the essential elements of the offence.
He also argued that not a single witness testified he obstructed, disturbed Zec from announcing the election results or from conducting any proceedings taken under the Electoral Act. Daily News.