via Sunday Mail editor bail hearing referred to High Court | The Zimbabwean 23 June 2014 by Sofia Mapuranga
The Sunday Mail editor, Edmund Kudakwashe Kudzayi who is being charged with “subverting a constitutional government, or alternatively, attempting to commit an act of insurgency, banditry, sabotage or terrorism” has been referred to the High Court for a bail application.
Kudzayi (28), of 65 Brooks Drive Hillside in Harare, is also charged with contravening section 28(2() of the Firearms Act (Chapter 10.09 ) and two other offences of publishing or communicating false statements prejudicial to the State or, alternatively, undermining authority of or insulting the president.
He first appeared on court on Saturday when he was remanded in custody with his case being deferred to today for bail hearing. Kudzayi was remanded in custody to July 7 2014 pending his High Court bail application.
Provincial magistrate Vakai Douglas Chikwekwe referred the matter to the High Court for the bail application, arguing that the matter contains a Third Schedule offence that is too serious for her jurisdiction and can only be dealt with by a senior court..
Chief Law Officer, Tawanda Zvekare from the Prosecutor Generals’ office said: “If you want to apply for bail then it has to be done at the High Court,” said Zvekare.
Kudzayi’s lawyer, Admire Rubaya, who has since taken over from Joseph Mandizha said the application would be filed by end of day today. “Everything is ready and by the end of the day, the bail application will be filed at the High Court,” said Rubaya, speaking to journalists after court proceedings.
Allegations against Kudzayi are that sometime in April last year, acting in connivance with Phillip Tawanda Kudzayi, his elder brother who is believed to be at large, and other unnamed suspects, created a Gmail account called firstname.lastname@example.org using an Econet line number 0771 446 541 registered in Phillip’s name.
It is alleged, that the Gmail account, whose Econet line is still possessed by Phillip, was used to create a Facebook account called Baba Jukwa.
The State alleges that Kudzayi planned and organised with some of his colleagues calling themselves The Gunda Nleya Brigade and Zimbabwe Revolutionary Army, to overthrow the government through a war and urged people to join the military outfits.
The state also says Kudzayi posted articles on the Baba Jukwa Facebook page and encouraged rebellion against the government if the July 31 general elections were rigged by President Robert Mugabe’s party, Zanu (PF).
It furthers accuses Kudzayi and his group of further posting articles on social networks to the effect that they had a civil disobedience command structure, Dare reChimurenga, in place and that a team was on the ground studying and monitoring the situation in Zimbabwe.
According to the police, the Sunday Mail on May 11 this year published a story about the alleged true identity of Baba Jukwa titled, “Hackers unmask Baba Jukwa”, a story which implicated two journalists based in South Africa, Mxolisi Ncube and Mkhululi Chimoio.
However, investigations revealed that Kudzayi was in control of Baba Jukwa’s Gmail account as his details were on the recovery panel of the same account.
The police, however, argue that their investigations revealed that the account was never hacked.
On August 7 2008 Kudzayi also wrote and published an article in the Zimbabwe Mail online publication attacking President Robert Mugabe.
In the said article, according to the State, Kudzayi went on to “falsely label the president a dictator who commits gross human rights abuses”.
He further called the president “a tyrant” and accused him of taking land from white farmers and giving it to his cronies and not the people of Zimbabwe.