Nine (9) Bulawayo City Council (BCC) municipal police officers who allegedly fired at vendors with rubber bullets last month have been granted bail.
The Chronicle reported that Ignatius Nyathi (51), Herbert Khumalo (55), Ntokozo Moyo (46), Lungton Moyo (42), Cent Moyo (49) Bekisipho Ncube (50) Lawrence Mathwasa (60 Bekezela Ncube 56, Mthabisi Moyo (30) appeared in court each facing two counts of attempted murder.
They were granted ZWL$50 000 bail each by Bulawayo regional magistrate Joseph Mabeza, who remanded them to 14 March.
As part of the bail conditions, the accused were ordered to report once a week at Bulawayo Central Police Station (homicide section).
Allegations were that on 23 February 2023, at around 7 AM, the accused persons were part of a team of municipal police who were on duty dispersing illegal vendors in Bulawayo Central Business District.
The court heard that the team was dispersing illegal vendors from an undesignated area along 5th Avenue between Lobengula Street and Jason Moyo Street.
They encountered a group of people chanting protest songs against BCC security details. Prosecutor Concilia Ncube said:
The accused persons who were armed with shotguns fired 41 shots indiscriminately towards the protesting group and as a result, Concilia Ndlovu was shot in the left hand and sustained an injury and there is a lodged foreign object which is yet to be extracted.
It is alleged that Ndlovu was not part of the group and was carrying out her normal business.
The second complainant Prosper Munemo was shot in the groin and sustained injuries.
The accused were released after their lawyers Messrs Herbert Chimbete and Maqhawe Mpofu of Coghlan and Welsh Legal Practitioners successfully applied for bail.
The State had opposed bail arguing that there was no guarantee that if released, the accused persons would not abscond given the gravity of the offence.
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