Political activist Hopewell Chin’ono, who is facing contempt of court charges and defeating or obstructing the course of justice, was yesterday denied bail by Harare regional magistrate Mrs Marehwanazvo Gofa.
The bail was denied on the grounds that the alleged offences were committed while he was on bail. In opposing bail, the State told the court that Chin’ono was likely to continue committing offences if released as he committed the latest alleged offences while on bail.
Mrs Gofa denied Chin’ono bail, saying he has a high propensity to commit offences before remanding the matter to November 26.
Allegations are that between October 25 and 27, Chin’ono used his Twitter account @daddyhope to post messages that impaired the dignity, reputation and authority of the court, and clearly intended to do so.
The other charge relates to Chin’ono’s remarks on his Twitter handle that he is in secret and unlawful communication with members of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), which has serious implications as it undermines the integrity of the criminal proceedings against him.
Government has since launched a corruption investigation to establish the true nature and extent of collaboration between Chin’ono and prosecutors in the NPA.
Chin’ono was already on bail in another matter pertaining to inciting violence ahead of the flopped anti-Government protest that had been planned for July 31.
As part of his bail conditions, he was banned from social media.