THE State yesterday applied for a separation of trial for three MDC-Alliance members — Joana Momombe, Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova — on charges of faking their abductions in May this year.
Prosecutors, Messrs Whisper Mabhaudhi and Michael Reza want Mamombe’s charges to be separated from those of Chimbiri and Marova, as she recovers from a mental ailment.
Mamombe was declared unfit to stand trial after undertaking some mental examination and she is receiving treatment.
In its application, the State told deputy chief magistrate Mrs Bianca Makwande that since Mamombe was not fit to stand trial, the cases against Marova and Chimbiri should proceed.
“Due to the fact that Mamombe is not fit to stand trial and she is still receiving treatment, we apply for separation of trial,” said Mr Mabhaudhi.
“The State is ready to proceed to trial in respect of the two. She will not suffer any prejudice if the State proceeds with the two.”
The trio, through their lawyer Mr Alec Muchadehama, opposed the application, saying the court should first get progress on Mamombe’s mental condition before making such a decision.
Mr Muchadehama said the court should know whether or not Mamombe was responding well to treatment before deciding on the separation of their trials.
“There is no trial before you and for starters there is no basis for the State to apply for separation of trial,” he said.
“There is need for the court to know progress on her treatment. When Mamombe asked for the report, the medical doctors wanted to know what exactly they ought to write.
“The court must make an order for report on her progress and should get details on what treatment she is getting, how she is responding, her current medical status vis-a-vis the previous records and how long she will take to recover.
“If you give this order, in a week’s time the court will be favoured with the report. This application would be premature without knowing the progress being made by Mamombe.”
Mrs Makwande said she needed to read the progress report on Mamombe’s treatment before making a ruling on Thursday. – Herald