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‘Posa here to stay’


POLICE Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri has defended the Public Order and Security Act (Posa), saying the piece of legislation empowered law enforcement agents to curb lawlessness.


Addressing senior police officers attending a provincial relations liaison officers’ workshop in Harare yesterday, Chihuri said without Posa there would be total chaos in the country.

“Let me speak on Posa. It is intended to create orderliness and it has been distorted by those who want to create chaos,” said Chihuri. “Anyone can rule this country, but if you do not have that piece of legislation, you cannot rule. How can you rule without rules and regulations? Otherwise there will be no orderliness.”

Posa has remained one of the contentious issues that has dogged the full implementation of the Global Political Agreement with the two MDCs and civic society groups calling for its repeal.

Previous attempts by MDC-T legislators to have Posa amended hit a snag in Senate after a privately sponsored Amendment  Bill had sailed through in the House of Assembly.

Justice and Legal Affairs minister Patrick Chinamasa argued the legislation could not be debated in the Senate as it was being dealt with by party negotiators.

Civic groups have accused police of using the law to crash demonstrations and any unsanctioned public gatherings.

“We have to understand the political environment. If you don’t understand, then you cannot manage the political conflicts. We are not saying police officers be MPs, we are saying know the political environment,” said Chihuri.

He said the workshop came at a time when the country was preparing for three major events – the United Nations World Tourism Organisation General Assembly, the constitutional referendum and general elections — all set for next year.

“These events are fundamental and as usual we want to ensure that they are conducted in a peaceful and tranquil environment, hence the participants have an obligation to assist the organisation in this regard,” Chihuri said.

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