Probably one of the longest trials in Zimbabwe’s history will finally see a second witness being led to provide evidence this week by Deputy Prosecutor-General Mr Michael Reza.
This follows the end of a three-month long cross-examination of Mrs Tatiana Aleshina by Tendai Biti’s lawyer, Mr Alec Muchadehama.
Biti, a CCC legislator, is facing charges of assaulting businesswoman and investor Mrs Tatiana Aleshina at the Harare Magistrates Court, resulting in her being admitted to Trauma Centre in Borrowdale.
During her testimony, Mrs Aleshina said she went to Trauma Centre to get treatment for her shoulders which were in serious pain after the beating by Biti.
While leading evidence, Mr Reza asked Mrs Aleshina what went through her mind during the incident, to which she said she was traumatised and thought Biti was about to attack her as he was aggressive, shouting and pointing his finger at her.
Mrs Aleshina told the court that she froze when Biti charged towards her and felt he would physically attack her.
“As we were walking in the corridor, I suddenly heard a noise and shouting behind my back,” she said.
Mrs Aleshina said she immediately stopped in shock, only to see a giant person in the form of Biti, with a crowd of people charging towards her.
She further stated that she had never come across that type of unruly behaviour in all her life.
She told the court that Biti was aggressive and pointed his finger towards her face, while shouting “you stupid stupid stupid idiot, and was shaking his body in an aggressive and angry way”.
“I did not understand what was going on and I asked him ‘are you talking to me’ but he continued his aggressive behaviour shouting and pointing at my face.
“After that, my colleague Michael Van Blerk, then tried to protect me and stood in front of me, but someone said ‘it’s not right, it’s dangerous here and you need to go’,” said Mrs Aleshina.
Mr Reza asked Mrs Aleshina to describe how she felt in that situation and she said: “I felt he would physically hit me. I believed at that moment I was in danger.
“I thought he could kill me. I was shaken and humiliated and disturbed.”
Mrs Aleshina said after the incident she felt confused and wandered around the court for some minutes looking for an exit point.
“On my way out someone asked me ‘why was Biti shouting at you’ and l couldn’t answer that. Someone else then said Biti can’t treat women like that you need to report him to the police.
“I decided to go to the Russian Embassy and tell them what happened. They calmed me down and advised me to go to the police to report the matter,” she said.
While at the police station, she discovered that half of her body was numb and could not move, even her hand to sign.
The police then offered to assist her to go to Harare Central Hospital, but she elected to be taken to Borrowdale Trauma Centre, where she got treatment and was not in a good condition, prompting them to put her on a drip and admitted her.
Mrs Aleshina told the court that Biti’s behaviour was unprofessional given that he is a lawyer.