Five of 16 people who were arrested for the murder of 35-year-old Mbongeni Ncube during a Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) party campaign rally in Kwekwe appeared in court on Tuesday, and were remanded in custody.
The five accused persons – Edmore Shoshera (30) of Mbizo 15, Albert Maketo Tembo (29) of Mbizo 15, Percy Mukwaturi (38) Chicago, Talent Imbayago (28) of Chief Choto, Gokwe and Panashe Makuvaze (24) of Chief Gwesela, Zhombe, were not asked to plead when they appeared before Kwekwe regional magistrate Florence Nago.
The five who are represented by different lawyers, were however, remanded in custody to March 15. The accused persons are facing murder charges as defined in Section 47 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23. They are also facing another charge of Public Violence as defined in Section 36 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23.
It is alleged that on February 27 at around 1530 hours, one of the accused persons stabbed Ncube with a sharp object thrice on the back. Ncube was rushed to Kwekwe General Hospital and was confirmed dead upon admission. All the accused persons were positively identified by witnesses who alerted police leading to their subsequent arrest at around 5:30pm on the same day.
They were found in possession of spears, knives and machetes.
On the public violence charges, it is alleged that the accused persons disturbed the peace, security and order of the public at Mbizo 4 Shopping Centre open space when they threw stones, spears, knives home-made petrol missile and used sjamboks and catapults to inflict bodily harm to people who were at a CCC campaign rally.
They allegedly damaged the rear screen of a Honda Fit vehicle, deflated all four wheels of a Mitsubishi Canter truck, shattered a rear left window of a Toyota Vios vehicle and went on to deflate seven wheels of a Toyota Dutio, including the spare wheel, and damaged its windscreen. As a result of the assault, several people were left injured. Some were treated and discharged while some are hospitalized and in critical condition.
In opposing bail, the State noted that the accused might abscond court and are likely to interfere with witnesses. Tembo and Shoshera have pending attempted murder and murder cases respectively.
Ethel Bhumure appeared for the State. —New Ziana