A HARARE magistrate Daniel Shonhiwa yesterday remanded out of custody MDC MP for Epworth Eliah Jembere facing a rape charge to October 20 after state witnesses failed to come to court.
Jembere is accused of raping the wife of an MDC councillor in his constituency while her husband was in remand prison on a politically-related case.
The legislator, who defaulted trial on May 27 and was placed on the police wanted list, was arrested last week when he attended the swearing-in ceremony of lawmakers at Parliament.
State prosecutor David Manavele asked the court for more time to allow the state to locate the witnesses.
Jembere’s lawyer Alec Muchadehama gave notice to the court that he will on October 20 apply for no further remand for his client if the state fail to produce the witnesses.
“If the sate fails to produce the witnesses on October 20 we shall be filing papers for refusal of further remand,” Muchadehama told the court.
Another MDC MP, Trevor Saruwaka (Mutare Central) will today appear at the Harare High Court seeking bail.
Saruwaka was arrested at the weekend for allegedly raping a 17-year-old relative.
Highfield MP Pearson Mungofa and Bindura South MP Bednock Nyaude were granted bail this week, but were not released after the state appealed against the move.
The state evoked provisions of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act which allows it to file an appeal for up to seven days while the suspect is in remand custody.
Mungofa is accused of teaming up with MDC party’s secretary Tichaona Mudzingwa and spreading lies that Morgan Tsvangirai had won the March 29 elections, while Nyaude was arrested on attempted murder charges and contravening the Firearms Act. – Staff Writer.