High Court quashes Dudu Manhenga’s jail sentence

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JAZZ crooner, Dudu Manhenga will not return to jail after the High Court on Wednesday quashed her prison sentence for culpable homicide.
Dudu, 34, was convicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison by a Harare magistrate after being found guilty of causing the death of a motorcyclist while driving without a licence.
She was jailed in October last year for the fatal accident which occurred in March 2010 in Harare.
Dudu was later released from prison on bail after appealing at the High Court.
And on Tuesday the Appeals Court judges Justices Francis Bere and Charles Hungwe said the accident was not caused by “gross” negligence and ruled that the penalty imposed was too harsh.
The court instead, slapped Dudu with a wholly suspended sentence for the offence.
She was also ordered to pay $1,000 for driving without a licence, failing which she would be jailed for three months.
The court heard that Manhenga only had a provisional driver’s licence when she crashed into Graham Martin Millward along Sherwood Drive in Harare’s Mabelreign area.
Prosecutors said Manhenga failed to give way to Millward as she turned right into the driveway of a residential property in her Toyota Spacio.
Millward suffered injuries and died on admission to West End Hospital.
But Dudu’s argued that the trial magistrate erred in finding her to be grossly negligent without making a factual inquiry into the circumstances in which the accident occurred.
She said the lower court incorrectly concluded that she was grossly negligent because she simply turned right into the path occupied by the cyclist.
Dudu argued that the court should have found her to be ordinarily negligent thereby imposing a lighter sentence on her.
The State was initially opposed to the appeal but consented last week.Advertisement