MDC Alliance trio seeks magistrate, prosecutor recusal

Source: MDC Alliance trio seeks magistrate, prosecutor recusal – NewsDay Zimbabwe

By Desmond Chingarande

MDC Alliance activists Joanah Mamombe, Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova have filed an urgent chamber application with the High Court seeking to stop their trial.

The trio is accused of publishing falsehoods.

Their lawyer Alec Muchadehama is also seeking recusal of magistrate Bianca Makwande and prosecutor Michael Reza who they accuse of being personal.

They submitted that they will never see justice as long as Makwande and Reza were handling their case.

“We protested that we could not properly plead to the charges given our so many misgivings in the matter, but Makwande forced us to plead to the changes that had been put to us,” Mamombe said.

“When we pleaded the time was around 18:37hrs. To say that I was shocked at what I witnessed on April 28 is an understatement. I became so afraid of Makwande and Reza that I concluded that the chances are like ice in hell that I would get justice before these two,” she further said.  “We all came to the conclusion that our matters had been predetermined by Makwande and that we were not going to get a fair hearing.”

The State alleges that the trio faked their abduction in May last year and blamed State agents for it. They are being charged with publishing falsehoods, apart from violating COVID-19 regulations.

Makwande is insisting on trial despite the trio’s application for review.

The urgent application is yet to be heard.