ICT Minister Supa Mandiwanzira seems to have got his facts confused after he claimed that #ThisFlag Movement founder Pastor Evan Mawarire was arrested because he had skipped bail last year and had a warrant of arrest issued for him. Mandiwanzira was addressing the media, after a meeting with British Ambassador Catriona Lang. The two had an hour long meeting, in which Lang expressed the concern and reservations of the British Government, over Pastor Evan Mawarire’s arrest and subsequent detention at Chikurubhi Maximum Security Prison before he been found guilty by a court of law.
Mandiwanzira, however, tried to place the blame on Pastor Evan Mawarire saying that he had absconded while he was out on bail last year. This is factually incorrect, as Pastor Evan Mawarire’s case was dismissed by the court last year. When he left the country he was a free man.
Addressing the media after his meeting with Lang, Mandiwanzira said:
She did mention the issue of Pastor Evan and it comes into this discussion particularly because Pastor Evan is now known internationally for having used social media to propagate his political views or his views on the government.
I was also very clear that the world understands that Zimbabwe is very serious about the rule of law.
I am not the minister of Justice or the minister of the Home Affairs but the truth of the matter is that Pastor Evan was on bail and he skipped bail.
He left the country and, when you skip bail, a warrant of arrest is issued. It does not matter who you are; whether you are a politician, a businessman or a church leader.
If you break the law, the law takes its course and, therefore, his arrest must be seen in the context of the rule of law in our country that if you breach your bail conditions you definitely get arrested.
Some people on Twitter called out the Minister on this misrepresentation of fact advising him to read more.
Mutsa Mungazi said:
Supa you are lying. Evan never skipped bail.It shows you are not well read.
Milton Nyamadzawo also reminded the Minister that people who skip while out on bail are not good candidates for bail saying:
How does someone who skipped bail gets bail ???
More: Twitter, New Zimbabwe