THE High Court has relaxed bail conditions for MDC Alliance youth leaders Joana Mamombe, Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova following an outcry over delays in the commencement of their “fake abduction” trial.
The prosecution is alleging that the trio violated peace regulations after staging a demonstration in the high-density suburb of Warren Park in Harare back in May and later stage-managed their abduction.
Their lawyer Paidamoyo Saurombe of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights successfully applied for a review of their reporting conditions the court had set when they were granted bail.
Mamombe, Chimbiri and Marova were ordered to report thrice a week to the police, but that has now been downgraded to at least once every fortnight.
“The three have been on remand since June and have been abiding with the strenuous bail conditions. The trial has had a number of false starts and it is uncertain when the real trial should start.
“Bail should not be punitive, but it is meant to secure attendance of accused persons to trial. Continuing with the strenuous conditions has become punitive as the accused persons could not go on with their normal lives having to report three times a week,” Saurombe had submitted.
High Court judge Justice Edith Mushore granted the application.