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Sunday Mail Editor Remanded in Custody on Terrorism Charges

The state claims that the Sunday Mail editor has a gmail account which was used to create a Facebook account called Baba Jukwa. (File Photo)
A Harare magistrate on Monday remanded the editor of the Sunday Mail newspaper, Edmund Kudzayi, in custody on allegations of terrorism.

The editor of the state-controlled Sunday Mail weekly, Edmund Kudzayi, was arraigned before the court for the second time today since his arrest last week Friday. He was brought to court in handcuffs wearing a khaki prison garb.

Kudzayi is facing charges of attempting to subvert a constitutionally elected government and communicating statements that are prejudicial to the state.

He is accused of running a faceless character on Facebook called Baba Jukwa that is critical of the Zanu PF leadership.

Provincial magistrate Vakayi Chikwekwe remanded Kudzayi behind bars saying he had no jurisdiction to hear a bail application in such a serious matter and asked the accused editor to approach the High Court.

Kudzayi’s lawyer, Admire Rubaya confirmed this development.

This followed submissions by state counsel Tawanda Zvekare who had suggested the bail application be heard in the High Court because it was a third schedule offence meaning that it is a very serious matter.

Although the state accuses the Sunday Mail editor of being the faceless cyber character, Baba Jukwa also posted messages on his Facebook page on Sunday while Kudzayi was behind bars.

Meanwhile, police are reportedly looking for the editor of the privately owned Zimbabwe Independent weekly newspaper, Dumisani Muleya, who is currently on leave.

The law enforcement agents reportedly visited the paper’s offices in Harare but could not find Muleya. Police spokesperson Charity Charamba, confirmed that that police are keen to interview Muleya but could not disclose the reason.

Recent newspaper articles linked two Zimbabwean journalists based in South Africa to the Facebook character but the scribes have distanced themselves from Baba Jukwa.