Ngarivhume jailed 3 years for calling for anti-corruption demonstrations
Opposition Transform Zimbabwe leader Jacob Ngarivhume has been sentenced to 48 months imprisonment while 12 months have been suspended.
He will effectively serve a 36 months (3 years) jail term for calling for demonstrations against President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s regime which he accused of orchestrating too much corruption sometime in 2020.
On Thursday, Magistrate Feresi Chakanyuka convicted the prominent anti-corruption activist.
His lawyer Professor Lovemore Madhuku tried to apply for a Constitutional Court referral, saying the basis of conviction was unreasonable and infringed the human rights in the Bill of Rights.
The State opposed the application for postponement of sentencing saying it was not necessary.
“He wants to challenge the constitutionality of Sec 192 but he has not yet been sentenced. We do not know what he is challenging because he has not been sentenced as yet,” said Prosecutor Shonhai.
Accordingly, the magistrate said that it was not necessary that the matter be postponed adding that the defence needed to make oral submissions for their application for referral to Constitutional Court.
Ngarivhume was eventually sentenced.
Speaking after his sentencing, Ngarivhume accused the regime of wanting to silence “all voices of dissent” in Zimbabwe.
“Obviously they want me not to participate in the next elections. But we remain resolute. We absolutely understand what they want to achieve. They want to silence all voices of dissent in this country.”
Meanwhile, top investigative journalist Hopewell Chin’ono who is facing the same charges which led to Ngarivhume’s conviction accused the Zanu-PF regime of being behind this.
“Zimbabwean political activist Jacob Ngarivhume has been jailed for 4 years for calling for Anti-Corruption demonstrations in 2020.
“The magistrate said he will serve three years in prison. Ngarivhume was first arrested on 20 July 2020 for calling for the demonstrations penciled for 31 July 2020.
“Zimbabwe’s constitution allows for citizens to demonstrate peacefully.
“The Zanu-PF regime has targeted journalists who exposed corruption, jailing them using laws that don’t exist and using bogus charges,” Chin’ono said.