Prosper Dembedza Court Correspondent
MDC-Alliance vice president Morgen Komichi was yesterday fined $200 or two months in prison after he was convicted of disrupting the announcement of the July 30 Presidential election results last year. Harare magistrate Ms Ruramai Chitumbura also wholly suspended a three months jail sentence for five years on condition of good behaviour.
In convicting Komichi, she said the State had managed to prove a prima facie case against him. She said his actions and conduct disturbed the announcement of election results and could have led to violence.
“He did not follow the procedures to air out his grievances and his actions went on to interrupt electoral proceedings when the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) was still announcing election results,” she said.
She, however, said a custodial sentence would be too harsh and that the court had also considered that he was a first offender and a family man.
Komichi’s lawyer Mr Obey Shava had in mitigation, told the court that his client was a married man and a father of four.
Mr Shava said his client as a vice president of his party and was obligated to motivate supporters in the country.
He added that Komichi’s case was less serious compared to that of MDC-Alliance principal Tendai Biti, who was found guilty of illegally announcing fake results for the 2018 harmonised elections and fined.
During aggravation, the State told the court that Komichi’s actions could have motivated his party supporters countrywide to indulge in violence.
The State further told the court that Komichi as a person in authority should lead by example and respect the laws of the country.
The court heard that on August 2, 2018, Komichi was at Harare International Conference Centre where ZEC was announcing the July 30 Presidential election results.
After a break, Komichi went to the podium reserved for commissioners announcing the results, took the microphone and announced that the MDC-Alliance was rejecting the election results.