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Mawarire Freedom Bid: Lawyer Optimistic


Ruling on popular cleric and founder of #ThisFlag movement Pastor Evan Mawarire’s bail challenge has been postponed to next week with his lawyer Tonderai Bhatasara of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) optimistic his client will not face any hurdles in his freedom bid.

Bhatasara told journalists that the state’s case was weak.

“The state’s case is weak, and there are no reasons why they should oppose bail. We hope that bail is going to be granted because the responded knows that the accused is mandated to bail that is why they altered the variations we had submitted, they know that there is nothing which can make be said is the reason to deny bail,” he said.

Mawarire is being charged with contravening section 22(2) (a) (iii) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act or in the alternative being charged with inciting public violence as envisaged under section 187(1) (b) as read with section 36(1) (a) of the code.

However, while submitting his bail application, the cleric maintained his innocence, challenging the state to prove if his utterances were in any way close to inciting violence or an attempt to overthrow President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government.

He insisted that nowhere in the video did he say people should engage in violent activities.

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However, the state is fighting against Mawarire getting bail on the grounds that he will abscond trial as he has a passport.

Mawarire offered to surrender his passport, title deeds of his parents’ house as a surety to guarantee his availability for trial.

However, High Court Judge Justice Tawanda Chitapi will make a judgement over the matter on Tuesday 29 January.

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Journalist based in Harare

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