Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Court Reporter
Anti-Government activist and Bulawayo South Constituency losing independent candidate in last year’s harmonised elections, Josphat Ngulube, appeared in court yesterday for allegedly leading an illegal demonstration in the city.
Ngulube (34) of Sizinda suburb appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Mr Franklin Mkhwananzi facing charges of contravening a section of the Public Order and Security Act (POSA) when he illegally convened a gathering without notifying the relevant authorities.
He was remanded in custody to today for bail ruling.
The prosecutor, Mr Mufaro Mageza said on July 13, Ngulube submitted a notice of a public demonstration to the police who are the regulating authority seeking to demonstrate on Wednesday and it was rejected as it was on short notice.
“The regulating authority noted the accused had not given the 7 day notice as required by the law. He was contacted and advised that the time of notice was not in compliance with the law and so the route which they were to use amongst other requirements was not stated,” said Mr Mageza.
The court heard that on July 15 Ngulube was invited to the regulating officer’s office for consultations and amendment of his notice to meet the dictates of the law but he refused.
“On July 17 at around midday at corner 10th Ave and Fort Street near Pick and Pay, Ngulube went ahead and convened a public demonstration where members of the public amounting to about 30 people gathered,” said Mr Mageza.
“Shelton Tembo and Goodson Phiri displayed a banner inscribed with the following “Citizens demonstration, we have suffered enough, this nonsense must stop!!!
Our voices will not be silenced and Zimbabweans need solutions to the economic crisis now.”
Ngulube is facing another charge of participating in the violent protests that occurred in January.
He and four other assailants are being accused of burning a vehicle belonging to Zanu-PF Bulawayo provincial women’s league chairperson, Cde Eva Bitu in Sizinda.
The matter is still pending before the courts.—@mashnets