A student with the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) who described President Emmerson Mnangagwa as a fool who makes false promises with his Vision 2030 has been granted bail after languishing in remand prison for three days.
The 22-year-old varsity student, Hither Rujeko Mupambwa was last week arrested on charges of undermining the authority of the Zimbabwe septuagenarian before she was detained at Kariba Remand Prison for three days.
Mupambwa is set to appear in court on September 10 after she allegedly criticised Mnangagwa’s state of the nation address on a community WhatsApp group known as Kariba Hard Talk on August 4.
According to prosecutors, she allegedly said “(Mnangagwa) is insisting on Vision 2030, he is a fool, we will die being told that dream.”
It is reported that some participants of the Kariba Hard Talk group chat went on to share Mupambwa’s comments with some state security agents, leading to her arrest.
Appearing before Kariba magistrate Bianca Mahere on August 6, Mupambwa who was being represented by Unite Saize from the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) was granted $5 000 bail.
And, speaking to one private weekly, Saize said her client did not commit any crime.
“She simply said emasoni, she never said Mnangagwa or president and there is no nexus with an offence,” Saize said.
She also added that there is no clarity that ’emasoni’ refers to the ruling Zanu PF leader.
The ZLHR legal practitioner also said Mupambwa will be back in court for remand because an authority for prosecution was yet to be granted.
“Freedom of expression is a fundamental human right and an indispensable element in the development and consolidation of a democratic society. Even the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 19 supports anyone to hold opinions without interference,” said ZimRights Executive Director Dzikamai Bere.
Since Mnangagwa took over through a military coup which toppled the late long-ruling dictator Robert Mugabe in 2017, a considerable number of locals including state security agents have been arrested on charges of undermining the incumbent Zimbabwe president.
Additional Reporting: Zwnews