Panashe Machakaire Herald Reporter
The State has closed its case in the matter of Mt Pleasant legislator Samuel Banda (MDC-Alliance) who is facing charges of violating the Electoral Act.
Prosecutor Mr Peter Kachirika closed the case after calling two witnesses and proceeded to the defence case.
Banda was arrested last year for providing a false address during the national Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) exercise.
Mr Kachirika told the court that Banda allegedly misrepresented to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) that he lived in Mt Pleasant, Harare during the BVR exercise. He contested for the Mt Pleasant House of Assembly which he won.
The address in question is No. 34 Waller Avenue, Mt Pleasant, Harare.
Mr Worship Dumba, a candidate in the Mt Pleasant parliamentary elections, reported the matter.
Banda yesterday appeared before Harare magistrate Mrs Learnmore Mapiye.
In his defence, Banda told the court that the witnesses, Mr Dumba and Mr Isaac Chidavaenzi were two bitter MDC-T losers.
“Dumba’s hatred comes from the fact that I stood in his way. And during campaigns, he went around telling people to vote for the real MDC and not vote for someone who ‘stays’ in Malawi.
“They have alleged that I am Malawian simply because one of my parents is from the neighbouring country, but I was born at Harare Central Hospital. It’s discriminatory to disqualify me because of my surname,” Banda said.
Banda said the two were conniving against him after he remained with the MDC-Alliance when they moved to MDC-T led by Dr Thokozani Khupe.
“Mr Chidavaenzi was bitter that his tenant had qualified.
He even called me while I was working in Malawi and said when you come back, you should move out of his premise.
“Their intention was for me to be removed as MP and replace me. Even now, they are waiting for the by election,” said Banda.