Unemployed Rushinga man charged for insulting Mnangagwa as a councillor is set free

By Court Reporter

A Zimbabwean man is under prosecution after he allegedly questioned
some ruling ZANU PF party sympathisers’ support for President Emmerson
Mnangagwa at a time when he stands accused of presiding over the
collapse of the economy.

38 year-old Morgan Muchemwa of Rushinga in Mashonaland Central
province recently appeared before Magistrate Tendai Chifamba at Mt
Darwin Magistrates Court answering to charges of undermining authority
of or insulting the president as defined in section 33(2)(b) of the
Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act.

In court, prosecutors claimed that Muchemwa publicly, unlawfully and
intentionally made an abusive indecent or obscene statement about or
concerning President Mnangagwa on 25 May 2019 at Marymount Business
Centre in Rushinga by blaming him for presiding over the suffering
being endured by Zimbabweans.

The unemployed Muchemwa, who is represented by Tinomuda Shoko of
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), allegedly acted unlawfully
when he told three ZANU PF party supporters namely Hazvinei Zhiwau,
Chipo Chiunje and Natty Kajengo, who were on their way to attend a
political party meeting at Bopoma Primary School, that they were
wasting their time in lending support to President Mnangagwa and his
ZANU PF party.

Muchemwa, who denies the charge returns to court on Monday 22 July
2019 after he was remanded out of custody to allow prosecutors to
obtain authority to prosecute from Prosecutor-General Kumbirai Hodzi.

Meanwhile, Brian Kembo, an opposition MDC party Councillor for Ward 3
in Bindura in Mashonaland Central province, who was charged with
disorderly conduct after he allegedly stated that President Mnangagwa
is liable for causing stress among citizens and for authoring the
country’s economic crisis, has been set free.

Kembo was set free after a Bindura Magistrate upheld his application
for exception to the charges after her lawyer Idirashe Chikomba of
ZLHR argued that the charge of disorderly conduct as defined in
section 41 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act was
inconsistent with the facts and the warned and cautioned statement
recorded from him.

The Magistrate ordered the State to proceed by issuing summons if it
intends to pursue the prosecution of Kembo.