via Tomana wants Komichi jailed | SW Radio Africa by Tichaona Sibanda November 22, 2013
It never rains but pours for Senator Morgan Komichi, the MDC-T deputy national chairman, after the state intimated they will appeal against his ‘lenient’ community service and intend to ask for a custodial sentence.
Komichi was early this month convicted of fraud and contravening the Electoral Act and sentenced to a wholly-suspended 18-month jail term after a full trial before Harare provincial magistrate Tendai Mahwe.
Komichi was arrested two days before the general elections in July after he was allegedly given a stray ballot paper found in a bin at the Harare International Conference Centre, and handed it over to Zimbabwe Electoral Commission. He spent 100 days in remand prison from the time of his arrest on July 28th.
Mahwe set aside eight months of the sentence on the condition that Komichi not commit a similar offence in the next five years. He further suspended the balance of the sentence on the condition that the senator performs 350 hours of community service at Mabelreign Clinic in Harare.
But the office of the Prosecutor General, headed by the controversial former Attorney-General Johannes Tomana on Friday said they viewed the sentence as too lenient. They are expected to file the papers at the High Court soon.
The Herald newspaper reported that the state intends to file a Chamber application for leave to appeal against the sentence before filing the proper notice of appeal. Contacted for comment, Komichi told SW Radio Africa that it was unfortunate that the state has decided to appeal against his sentence.
“I think the state is now personalizing the case, I just read about it in the Herald and will obviously wait for their next move. But it’s not a very good start by the state,” Komichi said.
He added: “The state should have the trust in its own system because this case went through a trial were a magistrate used his own judicial assessment as a trained law officer. And came out with a sentence he found suitable.”
The legislator continued: “But if the state thinks otherwise, I believe they are no longer interested in the case, but interested in the person, which is the persecution of Morgan Komichi.”
Promise Mkwananzi, the MDC-T youth assembly secretary-general said they always believed Tomana was being used by ZANU PF to persecute Robert Mugabe’s opponents.
“The effort by Tomana to jail Komichi reeks of political intimidation. We will urgently be meeting as the youth assembly to discuss this and we will issue a statement after our deliberations,” Mkwananzi said.