Magistrate Murove granted bail to Jena when he was finally brought to court on Monday morning after spending five days in police custody since his arrest and detention on Wednesday 14 December 2011.
Jena, who was represented by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) member lawyers, Chris Mhike of Atherstone and Cook Legal Practitioners and Tarisai Mutangi of Donsa, Nkomo&Mutangi Legal Practitioners was charged with contravening the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act for allegedly making an unlawful, intentional and abusive statement about Mugabe. Jena was also charged for allegedly undermining police authority.
State prosecutor Emmanuel Muchenga alleged that Jena insulted Mugabe on December 9, 2011 while enjoying some refreshments at Kimberley Reef Hotel in Bindura, Mashonaland Central Province when he stated:“Mugabe mudenga, Mugabe mudenga, muroverei pasi” which the State translated to mean “Mugabe up in the air, Mugabe up in the air, smash him on the ground.”
In the second charge, Muchenga alleged that the human rights lawyer unlawfully and intentionally made a false statement at Kimberley Reef Hotel in the presence of Tinashe Zisengwe, a police officer, who was on duty, with the intention of engendering feelings of hostility towards the police officer or the police force or exposing Zisengwe or the police force to contempt, ridicule, or disesteem.
According to Muchenga, Jena reportedly told Zisengwe that; “Ndinoziva kuti iwe uri muC.I.D weku Law and order. Ndinoda kuti undisunge izvozvi kana pane mhosva, Mugabe mudenga, Mugabe mudenga. Muroverei pasi. MaPP arimuno anaDeya ava ngavabve vandiprosecutor izvozvi,” which was translated to mean that; “I know that you are a detective attached to CID Law and order. I want you to arrest me now if there is an offence. Mugabe up, Mugabe. Smash him down. Prosecutors are here the likes of Mr Deya let him prosecute me.”
The matter was remanded to January 10, 2012.
Meanwhile in Mutare, Magistrate Noah Gwatidzo on Monday postponed to Tuesday a ruling on a bail application filed by Chimamimani West Member of Parliament, Lynette Karenyi, who was also charged with undermining the authority of or insulting Mugabe.
Karenyi, who is represented by ZLHR member lawyer, David Tandiri and who was detained when she reported at Mutare Central Police on Monday 19 December 2011, allegedly insulted Mugabe at a rally held in Nhedziwa, in Manicaland Province on 9 December 2011.
State prosecutor, Truman Joma claimed that Karenyi accused Mugabe of double standards by criticising her Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party for allegedly supporting homosexuality practices and yet the octogenarian leader’s party together with former Media, Information and Publicity Minister, Jonathan Moyo had endorsed gay rights in some of the country’s laws.