New Zimbabwe.com

MDC-T violence: Court bails 12 party activists

A BULAWAYO magistrate granted bail Wednesday to some 12 opposition MDC-T activists who were arrested after internecine clashes broke out at the party’s city offices this Sunday.

Those conditionally released from custody include the party’s provincial chairperson and deputy Bulawayo mayor Gift Banda as well as Ward One councillor Mlandu Ncube.

Eleven of the suspects were freed on $50 bail while Ncube’s bail was set at $200.

In addition to the monetary surety, the suspects were ordered to report once a month at the Bulawayo Central Police Station and to desist from interfering with State witnesses.

Arrested this Tuesday, the activists allegedly connived to attack the party offices with stones in a bid to disturb a meeting addressed by MDC-T vice president Thokozani Khuphe.

They all deny the charges and argue that they were the ones who first sought help from the police after being assaulted by some of the complainants.

“Our clients were the ones who first reported to the police after they were assaulted and injured at the meeting. Some of them were treated at UBH hospital,” said one of the defence attorneys.

“We are now surprised that the police have not bothered to investigate their claims but instead rushed to arrest the accused.”

In an interview with NewZimbabwe.com, defence lawyers, Dumisani Dube, said he was “very pleased with the outcome of the case”.

“From day, one it was clear that there is a lot of politics at play in this case. However, we are very pleased with the bail granted to our clients.”

Nine lawyers are representing the suspects, among them including MDC leader Professor Welshman Ncube, and PDP deputy president Kucaca Phulu.