THE seven MDC-T youths and a church pastor who were arrested on Monday while demonstrating for jobs, yesterday appeared in court facing charges of obstructing or endangering free movement of persons or traffic, and have been remanded in custody to today.
The seven are MDC-T MP Ronia Bunjira, Stanley Manyenga, Danmore Tshuma, Stewart Gwede, Lynet Chibinya, Bridget Nyandoro and Keith Charumbira, a church pastor who was allegedly caught in the cross-fire.
The lawyer representing the MDC-T youths Obey Shava of Mbidzo, Muchadehama and Makoni Legal Practitioners said his clients complained in court that they were assaulted by the police.
“My clients appeared in court today (yesterday) and have been remanded in custody to appear tomorrow (today) for their bail application,” Shava said.
“The clients complained about the assault from the police and the court has been ordered to investigate the issue.”
Police on Monday allegedly severely assaulted and detained photojournalist Angela Jimu, Bunjira and six MDC-T youths during a demonstration for jobs.
Jimu was assaulted and detained in the morning for taking pictures of the police as they pounced on the MDC-T youths who were marching demanding that the Zanu PF government delivers on the 2,2 million jobs promised in the run-up to last year’s elections.
The clampdown came as Southern African Development Community Heads of State and Government were gathered in the resort town of Victoria Falls for a summit that saw President Robert Mugabe taking over the bloc’s chairmanship.
Police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi yesterday said police had since launched investigations into the Monday incident where a journalist was caught in the cross-fire.
“Police have a constitutional duty to maintain law and order in the country and would like to warn the public against participating in unsanctioned demonstrations,” he said in a statement.