The High Court on Thursday denied journalist Hopewell Chin’ono bail reiterating that the Magistrates’ Court had not erred in saying that the award-winning journalist was rightfully arrested.
Justice Chitapi also warned Chin’ono’s lawyers (Beatrice Mtetwa) against attacking judges who had ruled against the journalist being granted bail.
The judge also observed that Chin’ono’s case needs to be heard by the court that initially denied him bail.
ustice Chitapi also noted that Chin’ono had failed to present evidence suggesting that Magistrate Nduna had erred in denying him bail.
Reads the ruling in part:
The second matter concerns the submissions made on appeal by the appellant’s counsel that the siltation had changed because the demonstrations which constituted the focus of the tweets having been planned for 31 July, 2020 did not take place. I indicated then that this was a matter outside the appeal record which I could not take account of. An appeal is determined on the basis of the record of proceedings taken on appeal. In other words, this appeal determines whether the decision of the learned magistrate as given on 24 July, 2020 based on what was said and produced before him is supportable. Anything which occurred after the hearing and judgment cannot be considered on appeal. Thus, whether or not it is still in the interests of justice to continue the detention of the appellant without bail is a matter which should be determined by the court which initially denied him bail. New facts which arise after the determination of a denied bail application cannot be considered on appeal. It was for these reasons that I refused to take account of events after the termination of the bail proceedings before the learned magistrate.
In disposing of the matter, I determine that the appellant has failed to demonstrate any misdirections of fact, law or both made by the learned magistrate in the court a quo as would justify interference with his judgment. In consequence therefore, the order I make is as follows:
“The appeal be and it is hereby dismissed.”