Opposition Figure, Job Sikhala Escapes Jail Again

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FIREBRAND opposition figure, Job Sikhala has escaped jail after he was handed a wholly suspended nine months jail term following his conviction last week for publishing falsehoods.

The former Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) legislator was also fined US$500 and risks going to jail for two months upon failure to pay the money.

This comes just over a week after he was given another wholly suspended sentence by a different magistrate who found him guilty of inciting public violence after spending 595 behind bars.

The former lawmaker, also a lawyer, was found guilty of publishing falsehoods prejudicial to the state on his Facebook account in 2020, alleging that a police officer had killed a baby who was strapped on her mother’s back while enforcing road regulations in 2020.

In sentencing him the magistrate focused more on reforming Sikhala.

“There is no factor justifying a custodial sentence. A fine in the level of eight is fitting.

“In line with this the offender is sentenced to US$500 and nine months wholly suspended on condition that he does not commit an offense involving publishing information prejudicial to the State,” said Harare Magistrate Feresi Chakanyuka.

The police had insisted Sikhala soiled their reputation.

However, Sikhala, through his lawyer Harrison Nkomo said he will be filing an appeal in respect of both convictions this Friday.

Nkomo said the magistrate erred in convicting his client on a non-existent law.

“We disagree with judgement. It has no foundation at law. It’s not sound. This law no longer exists.

“It’s wrong for a court to convict with a law that no longer exists. That law is dead,”Nkomo said.

Sikhala has two more criminal cases awaiting judgement on Friday and February 26 respectively.