Court To Rule On Mamombe’s Mental Challenges Case Thursday

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By Mary Taruvinga

HARARE magistrate Bianca Makwande is expected to hand down her ruling on an application by the state seeking mental examination for Harare West legislator Joanna Mamombe.

The state applied for her to be examined by at least two government medical doctors to determine her mental fitness to stand trial.

Mamombe is facing charges of faking her abduction early this year together with Netsai Marova and Cecilia Chimbiri all of the MDC Alliance.

Makwande heard an application by the state led by Michael Reza in terms of the Mental Health Act which legalises the mental examination to take place.

Mamombe’s lawyer Alec Muchadehama opposed the state’s application arguing the requirements of the section being relied upon by the state have not been met.

“For the provision to apply it has to be shown that the accused has appeared before the court for any purpose other than arraignment. The state was supposed to show that accused was mentally handicapped if she had appeared in court with another case,” he said.

Muchadehama said the fact that Mamombe failed to appear four times with reasons of mental challenges as alleged by the state was misplaced.

He said a default enquiry does not amount to such an enquiry.

Muchadehama said his client can only volunteer to be examined something she had already done.

However, Reza insisted that requirements of section 26 had been met adequately.

“It is on record that Mamombe was said to be mentally disturbed and it was her defence which told the court that information,” he said.

The magistrate will deliver her ruling Thursday.