Chikomo trial postponed again

via Chikomo trial postponed again | SW Radio Africa by Mthulisi Mathuthu October 28, 2013

The trial of the director of the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Abel Chikomo was once again postponed on Monday, for the fourth time.

Magistrate Tendai Mahwe deferred the trial until November 13th. Chikomo is facing charges of conducting a survey on transitional justice without registration as required by the law.

It is also alleged that Chikomo instructed two of his subordinates to ‘unlawfully’ source people’s recommendations on the preferred transitional justice for Zimbabwe.

The case, largely seen as another instance of judicial harassment, has gone on since February 2011. At one stage the state withdrew a summons against Chikomo.

In another separate case, Mahwe is expected to rule out on Friday if the case in which the Election Resource Centre (ERC) is accused of violating the Electoral Act will be referred to the Constitutional Court.

On Monday, the ERC requested the magistrates’ court to refer their case to the Constitutional Court, arguing that the section under which they are being charged infringes their right to freedom of expression.

The state alleges that the ERC violated section 40 of the Electoral Act by distributing voter awareness material in the form of t-shirts and fliers without approval from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.

Moses Chikora, Farai Saungweme and Wadzanai Nyakudya were arrested in May 2013 while conducting mobile caravans meant to encourage young people to register as voters.

ERC lawyer, Trust Maanda told SW Radio Africa that Mahwe said he will deliver his ruling on the case on Friday.