War Veterans remand application dismissed Victor Matemadanda
Douglas Mahiya

Douglas Mahiya

Tendai Rupapa: Senior Court Reporter

Five Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association (ZNLWVA) executive members accused of denigrating President Mugabe, will remain on remand following the dismissal of their application challenging placement on remand.Douglas Mahiya, Francis Nhando, Victor Matemadanda, Headman Moyo and Hoyini Samuel Bhila, are facing charges of undermining the authority of the President. In dismissing the application, magistrate Ms Bianca Makwande, said the facts as outlined by the State, disclosed an offence.

“The issues that the defence is raising, are triable issues,” she said.

“Facts as outlined in the form 242 (request for remand form) clearly disclose an offence. The issue of whether or not the acting Prosecutor General has authority to issue a certificate does not arise at this stage because it is not required for the purposes of remand. The application is hereby dismissed.”

Ms Makwande remanded the matter to October 17.

In their application through their lawyers, challenging remand, the five said the communiqué they are accused of authoring falls within the realm of political rights enjoyed in terms of Section 67 (2)(d) of the Constitution.

They said the person mentioned in the communiqué has not challenged the contents there-off.

“This communiqué, which was not authored by the accused, is merely a challenge by the authors to the governance of the country,” they said.

“The authors complained of the perceived erosion of the values of the liberation struggle, the neglect of the masses who are suffering and the persecution, decimation and expulsion of war veterans.

“They sign off by withdrawing their support for ‘a leader who has presided over untold suffering of the general population . . .’”

The group had also demanded that the State be ordered to produce a certificate of prosecution from the Prosecutor-General.

Victor Matemadanda

Victor Matemadanda

The prosecutor Mr Tapiwa Kasema alleged that between April 2016 and July 2016 Mahiya, Nhando, Matemadanda, Moyo and Bhila acting in connivance with other high ranking national, provincial and district members still at large authored a document titled “War Veterans communiqué on the state of Zimbabwe’s economy, the Zanu-PF party leadership and the way forward for the people of Zimbabwe” in which they allegedly made defamatory statements undermining the authority of President Mugabe.

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