Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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Lone Anti-government Protester Convicted, Sentenced

Harare Magistrate Simon Kandiyero has convicted and sentenced Itayi Uthant Makombe, a lone protester critical of the government, following his arrest for staging a one-man demonstration at the intersection of Sam Nujoma and Josiah Tongogara streets.

Makombe has been sentenced to six months in prison, with two months suspended on the condition of good behavior for the next three years. For the remaining four months, he has been ordered to perform 140 hours of community service.

In addition, Makombe has been fined US$200 or its equivalent for the second charge of possessing a firearm without a valid license. The fine is payable by June 30.

Makombe had been detained in jail for nearly a month after pleading guilty to charges of disorderly conduct and unlawful possession of a firearm.

During his court appearance, Makombe attributed his actions to stress arising from his ongoing divorce. Subsequently, he underwent a mental health evaluation conducted by two state doctors who determined him to be mentally sound.

Magistrate Kandiyero considered Makombe’s status as a first-time offender and acknowledged that he had saved the court’s time by pleading guilty. However, the magistrate also emphasized that such behavior is not condoned by the court, particularly during the current election season.

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Journalist based in Harare

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