Case against American journalist accused of insulting Mugabe dropped

O’Donovan accused Mugabe of being a 'selfish and sick man' on her Twitter account.

A Harare court has thrown out the case against an American journalist accused of insulting former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe, Reuters reports.

Martha O’Donovan, who works for Magamba TV, was arrested in November in a dawn raid on her home in the capital after she accused Mugabe of being a “selfish and sick man” on her Twitter account.

Police initially charged her with insulting and undermining the president, and subsequently with subversion, a charge that carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

O’Donovan denied the accusations and she was subsequently granted bail by Zimbabwe’s High Court after it alleged the facts didn’t add up and the police had to come up with new and relevant evidence.

On Thursday, magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa dismissed prosecutors’ application to keep O‘Donovan on bail.

“Further remand is denied. The State can proceed by way of summons,” she said.

Computers, cellphones and other electronic devices which had been seized from the journalist’s home were returned to her.

– African News Agency (ANA)


For more news your way, follow The Citizen on Facebook and Twitter.

Read more on these topics

Robert Mugabe

Access premium news and stories

Access to the top content, vouchers and other member only benefits