Opposition condemns police brutality against demonstrators

OPPOSITION parties yesterday roundly condemned the Zanu PF government for brazenly violating citizens’ right to participate in peaceful protests and using brute force to quell dissenting voices.


This comes in the wake of the police clampdown on rural teachers who took to the streets on Monday demanding better working conditions.


Police over the past two days also descended heavily on Harare and Chitungwiza commuter omnibus crews, who were demonstrating against stiff traffic charges imposed by the local authorities.

In a statement, the main opposition MDC-T equated the Zanu PF regime to a terrorist group which has no respect for provisions of the national Constitution.

“The MDC unreservedly condemns the high-handed and unlawful action by the police in violently crushing a peaceful demonstration. It is apparent that the Zanu PF regime is afraid of the people of Zimbabwe,” MDC-T spokesperson Obert Gutu said.

“The regime is now paranoid as it is acutely aware of the fact that millions of Zimbabweans are living in abject poverty and destitution as a direct result of the regime’s misrule, unmitigated corruption and misgovernance.

“Typical of all dictatorial and fascist regimes, the Zanu PF government is determined to use brute force and violence in order to unconstitutionally stop Zimbabweans from exercising their constitutional right to stage peaceful demonstrations. Zimbabwe has now degenerated into a virtual police state since all forms of demonstrations against the deteriorating socio-economic conditions presently obtaining in the country are crushed through the thuggish and Stalinist use of force and repression.”

The Tendai Biti-led People’s Democratic Party (PDP) accused the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) of operating outside its charter, which compels it to protect human life and respect the supreme law of the country.

“It is unprecedented brutality. They have lost focus on their service charter, which is to serve the public. The public are allowed by the Constitution to demonstrate and protest and that right should be protected by the police. They cannot simply chose which rights in the Constitution they seek to protect,” PDP spokesperson Jacob Mafume said.

However, police national spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba defended the ZRP, saying said they would not stand by and watch the country slide into lawlessness.

“As the police, we will not sit and watch these unsanctioned demonstrations happening because they are unacceptable and we are going to arrest those involved in such activities,” she said.

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  2. Shame on the ZRP .. It is as if they were not affected by the late payments of salaries in December themselves.. Perhaps they are happier now because they will be paid after the soldiers on January. They are being made to be lap- dogs just like the war veterans. They behave like they do not see what is going on in the country. Oh shame that some government departments are used to perpetrate failure of Governance in this country and to promote poor governance and dictatorships. What is the difference between Smith’s Police State Law and Order Maintenance Act and our present state of affairs? When are Zimbabweans going to realise that they used against each other as an oppressive instruments by the Failing ZANU PF government?

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