Fidelis Munyoro Chief Court Reporter
MDC-Alliance activists Joana Mamombe and Cecilia Chimbiri have been granted $10 000 bail each pending trial on charges of insulting the police.
The duo approached the higher court after the magistrates’ courts last week denied them bail on their latest charges of insulting police in central Harare, in flagrant disregard of their bail conditions set in two previous cases of faking their abductions last year and violating national lockdown regulations by staging an illegal demonstration.
Justice Webstet Chinamora granted the application by the two after the State which initially was opposing bail relented and conceded that the lower court had misdirected itself when it denied the duo bail.
In denying the pair bail, Harare regional magistrate Mr Stanford Mambanje ruled that the duo bail had a propensity to commit further offences once freed.
But in their application, Mamombe and Chimbiri argued that the lower court misdirected itself in denying them bail on basis of the sole ground of propensity to commit similar offences.
In this regard, the duo argued that there are no compelling reasons for the State to deny them bail.
The two are denying insulting the police and instead accused the police of arresting them on suspicion that they were participating in an illegal demonstration.
It is alleged that Mamombe was driving an unregistered Toyota Fortuner along Kwame Nkrumah Avenue in Harare side-by-side with a police patrol vehicle.
The police van was carrying some accused persons and while at the intersection of Kwame Nkrumah Avenue and Sam Nujoma Street, the two motor vehicles were stopped by traffic lights.
The court heard that Mamombe and Chimbiri opened their windows and started shouting at the police officers.