Chief Ndiweni’s lawyer Dumisani Dube has filed an appeal against the incarceration of the traditional leader by a Bulawayo court last week.
Chief Ndiweni was last week sentenced to 24 months in prison over malicious damage to property charges after he allegedly destroyed property belonging to a villager who had resisted an order to leave his area.
Bulawayo magistrate Gladmore Mushowe suspended 6 months of his jail term on condition of good behavior and ordered the remaining 18 months to be an effective jail term.
Chief Ndiweni’s 23 assailants were sentenced to 24 months in prison with 6 months suspended on condition of good behavior.
The remaining 18 months were wholly suspended on condition they each complete 525 hours of community service.
“This is a serious offence that was committed in aggravating circumnstances using fire,axes and other dangerous weapons. Fire is categorised under the third schedule which means the offense was committed in aggravating circumstances,” said Mushowe.
She said the offence was committed in a barbaric manner and it is unbelievable for a chief in this day and age to punish his subjects in that manner.
“A chief’s duties include protecting his people and mainataining peace and freedom now for him to break the law like this is very disturbing. The court will take into consideration that the other other 23 accused persons were acting under the instruction of a chief who is a voice of authority. As such there shall be a disparity in sentencing,” said Mushowe.
Mushowe ordered that the 525 hours of community service be completed within 20 weeks starting from August 19.