The Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum has reported that 11 of the 16 people arrested in connection with violence and murder at the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) rally held in Kwekwe over the weekend have been released.
Meanwhile, the remainder (5) appeared in court on Tuesday and were remanded in custody. The suspects who appeared before the courts are Edmore Shoshera (30) of Mbizo 15, Albert Maketo Tembo (29) of Mbizo 15, Percy Mukwaturi (38) Chicago, Talent Imbayago (28) of Chief Choto, Gokwe and Panashe Makuvaze (24) of Chief Gwesela, Zhombe.
In a statement seen by Pindula News, the forum said:
11 of the 16 Zanu PF youths arrested for allegedly killing a CCC supporter at a rally addressed by opposition leader Nelson Chamisa in Kwekwe on Sunday have been released. Police did not give reasons for releasing the 11 facing such a serious crime.
The suspects, who are suspected ZANU PF members were arrested for the murder of 35-year-old Mbongeni Ncube, damaging several vehicles, and injuring many people, some of which were treated and discharged while some are hospitalised and are in critical condition.
The five who are represented by different lawyers were not asked to plead when they appeared before Kwekwe regional magistrate Florence Nago who remanded them in custody to March 15.
It is alleged that on February 27 at around 1530 hours, one of the accused persons stabbed Ncube with a sharp object thrice on the back. Ncube was rushed to Kwekwe General Hospital and was confirmed dead upon admission.
All the accused persons were positively identified by witnesses who alerted police leading to their subsequent arrest at around 5:30 pm on the same day.
They were found in possession of spears, knives and machetes.
It is alleged that the accused persons disturbed the peace, security and order of the public at Mbizo 4 Shopping Centre open space when they threw stones, spears, knives home-made petrol missiles and used sjamboks and catapults to inflict bodily harm to people who were at a CCC campaign rally.
The state opposed bail saying the accused might abscond court and are likely to interfere with witnesses. Tembo and Shoshera have pending attempted murder and murder cases respectively.