Zitto finally arraigned, faces three sedition charges

03Nov 2018
Aisia Rweyemamu
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Zitto finally arraigned, faces three sedition charges

LEADER of the opposition ACT Wazalendo party Zitto Kabwe was charged yesterday with three incitement counts at the Kisutu Resident Magistrates’ Court in Dar es Salaam after spending two nights in police custody.

The ACT Wazalendo party leader, who is also the Kigoma Urban lawmaker, was released on a Sh10million bond.

Senior State Attorney Tumaini Kweka told Principal Resident Magistrate Huduma Shahidi that the accused committed the offences on Sunday, October 28, during a press conference at his party’s headquarters in Kijitonyama, Dar es Salaam.

On the first count, Kweka claimed that during the press conference, with intent to sow hatred among the people against the police force, he uttered seditious words.

He said Zitto claimed that when four people who were said to have been injured in a fracas involving the police and pastoralists in Uvinza district, Kigoma region, were taken to Nguruka Health Centre for treatment, the police went to the hospital and killed them.

Kweka told the court that the accused’s account was intended to cause fear and hatred against the police force.

He charged that this was contrary to Section 52 (1) and 53(1) (b) of the Media Service Act.

On the second count, on the same day, the accused, while holding a press conference, with intent to incite hatred among the people, uttered seditious words against the Tanzania police force, which is against the Media Service Act, No 12 of 2016.

The state attorney further told the court that the accused claimed at the press conference that his party had made a close follow-up on the security situation in Kigoma and found it very bad, claiming that many people had been killed by the police.

The accused, according to Kweka, had said that despite Inspector General of Police Simon Sirro having toured Kigoma region, he was yet to provide an account about the alleged killings of many pastoralists in Uvinza district.

“If the people invaded the ranch, there are legal procedures to have been taken and not to kill them…” the state attorney quoted the accused as having said at his press conference.

On the third count, according to the state, on October 28 this year, while holding a press conference at the ACT Wazalendo offices, with intent to bring hatred among the public, the accused issued a press release containing seditious words against the Tanzania police.

The statement allegedly reads, inter alia, “We have followed up on what is going on in Uvinza and we are saddened to say that the information we got from there is alarming…

“… We have been told that about 100 people of the Wanyantunzu tribe have lost their lives after they were shot by the police…….”
Kabwe denied all the charges. He was released after securing bail and the case was adjourned to November 26, this year.

Top Stories