Mathew Masinge

THE trial for cult leader, Madzibaba Ishmael Chokurongerwa and his seven accomplices, is expected to get underway today.

The eight were denied bail last month when they appeared before Norton Magistrate Christine Nyandoro.

They have since approached the High Court, seeking bail.

The case is before Justice Rodgers Manyangadze, who is expected to also make his determination.

The magistrate’s court had denied them bail on the basis that their release was likely to cause a public outcry given the nature of the allegations they are facing.

Madzibaba Ishmael, and his accomplices, stand accused of contravening Section 3 (1) and (2) of the Burial and Cremation Act 5:03 and Section 7(1) and (5) of the Children’s Act 5:06.

The co-accused are Takavengwa Gwenzi (55), Siribiniyo Chikunire (53), Wonder Kabaya (41), Devlodge Katsande (47), Zebediah Sigudu (49), Aaron Chokurongerwa (47) and Shingirai Ngavafume (42).

Prosecuting, the State said sometime in November 2023, Madzibaba Ishmael and his accomplices conducted the burial for one Hazel Chikunhire and Winlet Kabaya, without burial orders issued, in violation of the Act.

Since 2019, Madzibaba Ishmael and others are also accused of neglecting, abandoning and exposing their children to various ailments, causing unnecessary suffering to the kids, whose health was badly affected.

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