High Court Reserves Judgement In Ngarivhume's Appeal Against 4 Years Imprisonment3 months ago
The High Court has reserved judgement in a matter jailed Transform Zimbabwe (TZ) leader, Jacob Ngarivhume is seeking bail pending appeal against his conviction and sentencing.
Ngarivhume was in April 2023 found guilty of inciting public violence; using his Twitter handle to call for the 31st July 2020 nationwide anti-government protests.
Despite claiming he did not own the alleged Twitter account, the former MDC Alliance principal was convicted and sentenced to four years imprisonment, with one year suspended conditionally.
High Court judge Justice Pisirayi Kwenda reserved judgement indefinitely after hearing arguments by Ngarivhume through his lawyer, Lovemore Madhuku.
Madhuku argued that the magistrate who convicted and sentenced his client erred in finding him guilty of an offence he had not committed. He said:
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This is the first time we have seen a politician being sent to jail for saying statements that allegedly incite the public.
The court in its ruling treated it as if he had actually committed public violence.
There are other factors which we believe were not taken into account.
We should not create a situation whereby we just jail politicians. In fact, it is on record that nothing happened, there was no violence on July 31 2020.
We pray that he pays half a million (bail), which is quite a substantial amount, to continue residing at the same address and not interfere with witnesses. There is no intention for him to abscond.
We believe that the High Court will certainly not uphold the conviction. We are very confident about that.
In sentencing Ngarivhume, magistrate Feresi Chakanyuka said she took into consideration that Ngarivhume “is a first offender” adding that “a fine or suspended sentence would not deter further offenders, a sentence must be meaningful.
More: Pindula News