HARARE – Retweeting a parody account can land one in court, a Harare man discovered on Wednesday.
Night Tawona Shadaya, 25, pleaded guilty to criminal insult after telling a magistrate that he was drunk when he retweeted a fake Twitter account in the name of Priscilla Chigumba, the chairperson of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).
It was just days after the July 30 elections when Shadaya retweeted the parody account.
The tweet said: “I can’t wait for the election fiasco to come to an end. I could do with a holiday and some good sex. My body needs a break.”
Shadaya told Harare magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa: “It was a mistake.”
The Harare man, who is unemployed, said he had downed a few beers and was not thinking clearly.
“I had three Black Label quarts. I was tipsy and I simply retweeted the post. After I realised the mistake, I undid the retweet. I undid the post the following morning after I regained my sober senses.
“I don’t know who owns that account or its origin and all I can ask for is mercy. What I did was not intentional, even when I heard about the charges I’m facing, I apologised on all social media platforms and even warned others against making the same mistake.”
He admitted that his retweet impaired Chigumba’s dignity and asked for forgiveness.
Prosecuting, Francesca Mukumbiri said his defence was a guilty plea.
Chigumba was forced to issue a statement clarifying that she did not have a Twitter account.
Shadaya is set to learn his fate on Thursday after he was remanded in custody. In mitigation, he told the court that he owns nothing of value and is not employed.-zimlive