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MDC Alliance MP summoned to appear in court over August 2018 demo

By Nyashadzashe Ndoro | Nehanda Politics |

Police have summoned Budiriro MDC Alliance MP Costa Machingauta to appear in court over the August 1, 2018 post election protests which led to the shooting of civilians by soldiers.

Costa Machingauta
Costa Machingauta

Opposition supporters staged a demonstration in Harare, a day after the presidential election. They were protesting against the late announcement of election results by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration recklessly deployed soldiers on the day to disperse thousands of opposition supporters.

At least six people were killed by armed soldiers and hundreds were severely injured. Machingauta has since been charged with inciting violence in connection with the protests.

Police have summoned him to appear at Harare Regional Magistrates Court over the crime allegedly committed two years ago.

“In that on the 01th Day of August 2018 at OK Budiriro, Harare Costa Machingauta unlawfully and intentionally communicated to persuade or induce the other person to commit a crime of Public Violence or realising that there was a risk or possibility that the other person may be persuaded or induced by the communication to commit the crime of Public Violence by saying to gathered MDC members ‘vakomana tabva Kure tichibirwa tingadai takatonga nyika kare hatingamiriri kuramba tichibirwa. Vanhu varipano toenda kutown kana tichifa tofira mutown macho….’ resulting in the same people committing acts of public violence in Harare CBD on 1 August 2018,” read the summons.

Machingauta is one of the several people who were arrested and charged with committing public violence during the election protest.

This followed the arrest of MDC Alliance vice president Tendai Biti, party supporters and officials David Zvavamwe Shambare, Shadreck Mashayamombe, Tapiwa Joni, Ngonidzashe Makazhu, Michael Mheta, Simbarashe Mujeye, Judith Chacha, Lilian Mahosi, Anna Chezhira, Angeline Mukoki, Agatha Mubaiwa, Chancellor Nyamande, Livenice Kachana, Tichaona Daniel, Farai Nyamhunga, Mercy Mataramvura, Munyaradzi Chibanda, Samson Nerwande, Raymond Machakaire, Tapiwa Naume Khamu, Tendai Torerwa, Christopher Nikisi, Tonderai Chakona, Justin Mugashu, Simbarashe Zvobgo, Trymore Mubaiwa, Searchmore Mutegude, Kudakwashe Katunhu, Last Vambe and Jeff Chaitezvi.

Dewa Mavhinga, Southern Africa director at Human Rights Watch on August 7, 2018, is quoted advising Mnangagwa to address the issues of human rights abuses.

“With soldiers unleashing violence against ruling party opponents, the veneer of respect for human rights and democratic rule that President Emmerson Mnangagwa claimed is now clearly gone.

“His administration needs to act quickly to restore its integrity and commitment to the rule of law,” he said. Nehanda Radio