‘Rogue’ soldiers granted bail

The Bulawayo High court has granted four men who allegedly set ablaze three trucks at Ashys service station in Bulawayo’s Nkulumane 12 suburb during the Shutdown protests a bail.

The quartet’s legal representatives had made an application for discharge at the close of the state case but to no avail before Western Commonage magistrate Tancy Dube.

Tafadzwa Mhou (26) a soldier, Washington Chididi (26), Dexter Mungwadi (23) and Dalumizi Ndlovu (26) are facing a charge of public violence.

They were part of the mob that protested on January 15 during the stay away skirmishes which were marred with vandalism of property and looting.

High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese freed Mhou and Ndlovu on $50 bail while Chididi and Mungwadi got $20 bail each.

They are set to appear at Western Commonage court on Wednesday, February 13 for the continuation of trial.

State representative, Thembeni Mpofu told the court the accused persons were part of the people who were protesting at Ashys garage.

“The accused went to some parked vehicles where they set ablaze three trucks. Moyo was shot in the abdomen and was bungled into a Nissan Note before they drove him to 1 Brigade to seek medical attention,” the court heard.

Meanwhile, two men who are facing allegations of fatally stoning a police officer in Njube suburb during the same protests are still remanded in custody awaiting bail approval from the High Court.

Charles Thomas (56) and Bernard Sibanda (18) are alleged to have been part of the mob that stoned the police officer and are facing a murder charge.

The pair is set to appear before Bulawayo Provincial magistrate Tinashe Tashaya on February 18.

Magistrate Tashaya advised the pair to apply for bail from the High Court as they await provision of trial date.

For the state, Mufaro Mageza said Thomas and Sibanda allegedly struck the deceased officer, Ekson Maune, repeatedly with a stone at the back of his head until blood gushed out and they left him for dead.

“The pair was in amongst a mob on a public violence spree. Sibanda struck Maune with a stone on the head and he fell to the ground. The mob grabbed Maune and sat him on the ground before Thomas repeatedly struck him at the back of his head until blood gushed out,” said Mageza.

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