Lovemore Meya Court Correspondent
Forty people, including two juveniles of school-going age, who allegedly took part in skirmishes that led to the destruction of property worth thousands of dollars in Chitungwiza, appeared in court on Thursday charged with public violence.
The 40 also allegedly barricaded roads with large stones and stoned the police.
Pardon Mashayamombe (35) of St Mary’s is jointly charged with 33 others including the two minors aged 15 and 16 respectively.
Michael Charamba (34) of Zengeza 4 and five others also appeared in court on separate charges.
The accused’s ages vary from 15 to 50 and most of them are from Chitungwiza while a few came from Waterfalls and Westlea in Harare.
Appearing before Chitungwiza resident magistrate Mrs Renika Dzikiti, they were not asked to plead to charges of public violence and participating in a gathering with intent to promote public violence, breaching of peace or bigotry.
The 38 adults were remanded to January 21 on $50 bail, while the two minors were freed into the custody of their parents.
Prosecutor Mr Donald Mudadirwa told the court that on January 5 and at around 7:30 am at Chigovanyika Shopping Centre in Chitungwiza, the accused persons barricaded the road.
They allegedly blocked the road with stone boulders and threw stones towards the police who were dispersing the riotous mob. It is further alleged that the mob was demonstrating against Chitungwiza Municipality for hiking annual commuter operating fees.
Charamba and his accomplices, acting in concert on the same day at around 11.30 am allegedly teamed up with the purpose of protesting against council decision. They allegedly went to Zengeza 4 Pagomba Shopping Centre and barricaded the road using boulders, forcing all commuters to disembark from commuter omnibuses despite warning by the police to desist from such acts.