MDC Official Freed For Likening Mugabe To A Dead Person

Rusape Town councillor Teddy Chipere, who is also the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) district chairperson for Makoni Central in Manicaland was arrested on Monday for allegedly contravening Section 33 (2) (b) of the Criminal Law (Codification Reform) Act Chapter 9:23 by likening President Mugabe to a dead person during an address to party supporters on 22 May at Shiriimwe Business Centre in Nyamaropa, Nyanga.

He was granted US$50 bail on Wednesday by Mutare Magistrate Enia Ndiraya after his lawyer Blessing Nyamaropa of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) applied for bail.

The State alleged that Chipere uttered the words; “President Mugabe vava mushakabvu, uye handikwanise kutsanangura zvaava izvezvi nokuti haakwanise kufamba uye kuzvitsigira. Vamwe vatsigiri veZanu (PF) vachirikungotsigira munhu achembera kudaro,” that is to say “President Mugabe is now deceased and I cannot explain the state of Mugabe today as he can now not walk or support himself but there are some Zanu (PF) people supporting such an old man.”

Besides ordering Chipere to pay US$50 in bail money Magistrate Ndiraya also ordered him to report to Rusape Police Station once every last Friday of the month.

On Tuesday Bindura Magistrate Ruramayi Chitumbura released on bail MDC Member of Parliament for Epworth Eliah Jembere and the party’s Provincial Treasurer for Mashonaland Central Province Gilbert Kagodora, who were arrested for allegedly insulting and undermining the authority of President Robert Mugabe.