BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
MDC councillor for Mabelreign, Denford Ngadziore, appeared at the Harare Magistrates’ Court yesterday on allegations of inciting last month’s public violence.
Ngadziore, who was represented by Tinomudaishe Shoko, a member of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, appeared before magistrate Victoria Mashamba on trial.
Although the councillor pleaded not guilty, the first witness, Talent Chikanya, told the court that he saw Ngadziore inciting people to block the road in Snake Park and Glen Norah C in Harare on January 14.
Chikanya said he clearly identified Ngadziore and is sure that the police arrested the right person when he gave them the description of the accused.
But under cross-examination from Ngadziore’s lawyer, Chikanya failed to explain why he made different statements to the police and in court.
In his statement to the police, Chikanya said he saw Ngadziore driving a Mazda 626 vehicle on the day in question and in court he claimed Ngadziore was a passenger in the same vehicle.
Another State witness, Tinashe Chibaya told court that he did not know why Ngadziore was in court. He told court that the accused person addressed them as MDC youths not to go to work on the day.
Ngadziore, however is denying the offence, saying he does not own a Mazda 626 vehicle and he did not go to the areas alleged by the witnesses.
Mashamba postponed the matter to today for trial continuation.
Allegations are that on January 10 this year, Ngadziore proceeded to Glen Norah C, where he called for a meeting and allegedly urged the gathering that there will be demonstration on January 14 and all roads should be barricaded so that there will be no movement of traffic.
It is alleged that on January 13, Ngadziore drove a white Mazda 626, visited several places in Harare, including Snake Park, Glen Norah, Budiriro, Kuwadzana to engage in acts of public violence.
The State alleges that on January 14, Ngadziore again proceeded to Glen Norah C, where he met some MDC youths and gave them money to buy beer so that they participate in the demonstrations.
On the same day, the demonstrators allegedly heeded Ngadziore’s call and engaged in acts of violence in which several properties, including police vehicles, private vehicles and public transport were burnt and various shops looted.
It is alleged that detectives then received information that Ngadziore was at Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport intending to board a flight to South Africa. A follow up was made, leading to his arrest.
Idah Maromo appeared for the State.