Confusion rocks Sikhala court appearance amid jurisdiction issues

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By Mary Taruvinga

MDC vice chair Job Sikhala Wednesday failed to appear at the Harare magistrates’ court as announced before amid confusion on whether he should be tried in Harare where he lives or in Masvingo where he allegedly threatened to overthrow President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

There were reports Wednesday morning the firebrand legislator could be sent to Bikita.

MDC spokesperson Daniel Fortune Molokele told journalists outside the Harare Magistrates’ Court that they were also confused since they were told of three different versions of what was transpiring.

Party supporters who came in solidarity with the Zengeza West lawmaker had to disperse after receiving information that Sikhala was being ferried to Bikita.

“At the moment we are still trying to verify the facts,” said Molokele.

“There are three statements that are coming out. We have been told that he will appear in this (Harare) court later in the day.

“We are also being told that he is at Harare Central Police station and the other statement is that he might go to Masvingo because the whole thing occurred in Bikita because that where the whole thing happened.

“So we are trying to get in touch with the lawyers to get clarity because it seems to be a very confusing situation,” said Molokele.

MDC secretary General, Charlton Hwende; party deputy secretary for International Relations, Douglas Mwonzora; organising secretary Amos Chibaya and a few activists were among a handful of supporters who had attended court in solidarity with Sikhala.

In an interview with, Sikhala’s lawyer, Obey Shava said the MP was expected to appear in a Bikita court.
“We have been told that he will appear in Bikita court because that’s where he committed the crime.

“Right now, we are at the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and we are expecting to travel soon. From the look of things, there is no way he will appear in a Harare court,” said Shava.

After people had dispersed, there was communication again from one of Sikhala’s lawyers who said there was now a possibility that he will be taken to Harare magistrates’ court.

However, unconfirmed reports said Sikhala was going to be taken to the Harare Magistrates’ Court at 2pm Zimbabwe time on Wednesday.

hala is being accused of threatening to overthrow President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government at a Bikita rally over the weekend.

He was arrested Tuesday evening before he was charged with subversion.

Molokele said the MDC top official was shaken but confident because he did not commit any crime.