LAWYERS representing incarcerated Zengeza West MP Job Sikhala (Citizens Coalition for Change) yesterday said the credibility of the country’s Judiciary could only be restored if the opposition politician is granted bail.
“Public confidence in the criminal justice system and the integrity of the court is best served by his admission to bail,” Jeremiah Bhamu submitted while applying for Sikhala’s release on bail.
“This is so in the sense that the State has, purely through its own actions, festered an unfortunate impression that, firstly it has become the policy of the State to arrest the accused at least once a year.
“Secondly, upon such arrests, it has become the seeming policy of the magistrates court to routinely refuse him bail, with bail only being granted after he has spent a protracted period in prison of 30 days or more. Thirdly, the State bears no interest in bringing any of his matters to finality …”
Sikhala faces charges of incitement to public violence following the skirmishes that rocked Nyatsime at the funeral of slain opposition activist Moreblessing Ali.
The MP, who is charged alongside his counterpart Godfrey Sithole, who is Chitungwiza North legislator, also faces a separate charge of defeating the course of justice in the same case.
Magistrate Stanford Mambanje will rule on Sikhala’s bail application on Tuesday.