High Court Judge Justice Erica Ndewere yesterday reserved judgement in the bail application of MDC Vice-Chairman Job Sikhala after both the defence and the prosecution made their submissions, The Herald reports. Justice Ndewere said she needed more time to make an informed decision on the matter in which Sikhala is being accused of inciting public violence.
Sikhala’s lawyer Advocate Eric Matinenga argued that:
The magistrate erred and misdirected himself in denying him bail in a case in which the State failed to establish compelling reasons. The lower court’s finding that Sikhala went into hiding for some time before he could be arrested was inconsistent with established evidence in that no evidence was led by the State of any effort to contact his client to surrender himself to the police at any stage.
No evidence was even led by the prosecution that Sikhala was wanted in connection with any offence. It was also the lawyer’s contention that there was no legal obligation for Sikhala to surrender himself to the police merely on account of being labelled an activist by the police.
While the state maintained that Sikhala hid in Tynwald while they were looking for him, therefore he was a flight risk.
More: The Herald