The MDC family showed its solidarity and unity of purpose by turning up in their thousands at Masvingo High Court for the commencement of the persecution of Honourable Job Sikhala by the State under the guise of charging him with a non-existent criminal offence.
As a party, we have stated it loudly and clearly that Honourable Job Sikhala did not commit any offence but is being haunted for his courage and for articulating the concerns of the people of Zimbabwe.
Today our legal team, led by lead Counsel Beatrice Mtetwa, filed an exception to the charge in terms of Section 171(2) of the Criminal Procedure & Evidence Act Chapter 9:07 that the allegations laid out in the charge sheet (which are not being admitted) do not disclose an offence.
It is clear that at no stage is it being alleged that Honourable Sikhala organized or suggested the setting up of any group or body with a view to overthrow or attempt to overthrow the government by unconstitutional means.
It is our respectful view that there is nothing criminal about seeking the removal of Emmerson Mnangagwa who, notwithstanding having no legitimate mandate, is failing the people of Zimbabwe.
The legal submissions made in court this morning were sound and in our view, the State dismally failed to make any meaningful response and the Court postponed the matter to the 14th February 2020 to enable it to study the submissions and give a reasoned judgment.
While we will not attempt to preempt the Court’s findings, we in the MDC believe that Honourable Job Sikhala’s Constitutional rights are being violated and the Constitution provides for various rights which he was exercising and these should not be criminalised.
The people of Zimbabwe are suffering as a result of corruption, bad governance, economic mismanagement and illegitimacy.
The way only out of this quagmire is genuine and sincere dialogue and the MDC will not shy away from articulating the people concerns and calling for legitimate and constitutional means to bring about change in Zimbabwe.
MDC Secretary for Justice & Legal Affairs