Home » Legal and Judicial Affairs » Chikurubi Saga Rages On

THE Zimbabwe Prison and Correctional Services has defied a court order to give basic toiletries to suspects accused of masterminding the foiled jailbreak at Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison, a Harare magistrate heard yesterday.

Through their lawyer, Mr David Hofisi, the suspects claimed their items had been confiscated by the ZPCS after their escape bid in February this year.

Lucky Matambanadzo (39), Blessing Chauke (25), Lucky Mhungu (38), Taurai Dodzo (47), Thomas Chacha (37), Thulani Chizema (32), Jacob Sibanda (28) and Elijah Vhumbunu (38) recently made an application for their case to be referred to the Constitutional Court.

They appeared before Harare magistrate Mr Tendai Mahwe.

Gumbura was among the suspected consiprators who appeared in court and was remanded to June 3.

The prisoners are already serving various terms ranging from 12 to 40 years.

They are currently facing charges of attempting to escape from lawful custody, incitement or alternatively, conspiracy.

They face an additional charge of incitement to assault or, alternatively, conspiracy to assault.

Mr Hofisi said his clients did not have towels, toothbrushes, soap, slops and jerseys after their toiletries were confiscated by the ZPCS.

Mr Mahwe sought to know from prosecutor Mr Michael Reza why the ZPCS was defying a court order.

Mr Reza professed ignorance and pledged to investigate if the issues raised were true.

The State alleges that on February 13 in the morning in B Hall at Chikurubi, Gumbura incited other inmates to protest over poor food quality saying it was an infringement of their rights.

It is alleged the move was aimed at creating chaos leading to a jail break.

Gumbura allegedly told the inmates that Zimbabweans were foolish and that if it were in South Africa inmates would have protested and broken all prison windowpanes.

He told the inmates to protest for better quality food by singing throughout the night.

All inmates in B, C and D halls spent the night singing and banging cell bars denouncing the type of food they were being served.

They influenced other prisoners to refuse food in protest at its quality.

Violence later erupted with prisoners vandalising property whose value is estimated at $450 000.

Gumbura is represented by Mr Tapson Dzvetero.

Source : The Herald