A GWERU man, who was being accused of trying to disrupt First Lady Grace Mugabe’s rally in Bulawayo sometime last October, died of pneumonia at his Gweru home on Boxing Day.
The 34-year-old man was still waiting for the State to present a psychiatric report to the courts so his trial could proceed.
According to officials at the Bulawayo Magistrates’ Court, Emmanuel Muzorera’s father yesterday brought to the court his son’s death certificate to show that he had died while his criminal case was still pending. The death certificate showed that Muzorera died of pneumonia at Chenandoah Road Plot 15 Greenvale in Gweru on December 26.
Muzorera, who appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Sibongile Msipa Marondedze, had on his last remand date told the court that the psychiatrist had examined him and had told him his mental report had been sent to the courts.
But the magistrate said she had not yet received the documents and remanded the matter to January 16 for the unveiling of the report in court.
On October 21 last year, Msipa had ordered that Muzorera be examined by two medical doctors to establish the state of his mental faculties in accordance with Section 26 of the Mental Health Act, after some family members indicated in court that he had a history of mental problems.
She later ordered that he be examined by a psychiatrist to ascertain his state of mind for a full trial to be conducted or for a special verdict to be passed that he be referred to Mlondolozi mental institution.
This was after one of the doctors indicated in the medical report that he smoked mbanje, while the other indicated that he might be mentally ill.
Muzorera was out of custody in the care of his parents and relatives.
He had earlier on pleaded guilty to picking the microphone from the podium without permission, but denied claims he intended to disrupt the rally.
Msipa Marondedze entered a plea of not guilty as a result, prompting the need to have a full trial conducted to prove whether he had intended to disturb the meeting as claimed.
The court heard that on October 15 this year at 3pm, Muzorera was among a crowd of people who attended Grace’s rally at Amazulu Stadium.
Muzorera allegedly stood up and moved from the crowd to the podium, where he picked the microphone without permission.
This led to his arrest on the spot by a police officer who was at the rally.