Two protesters fined for contempt of court

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TWO protesters were yesterday charged for contempt of court and fined $20 each by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) after they besieged a courtroom and started taking selfie pictures while seating on the magistrate chair.

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

court-gavel

Police refused to provide the names of the suspects, but one Abraham Sadza showed NewsDay his $20 fine receipt.

Sadza and his friend were part of demonstrators who sought refuge inside the magistrates’ court after riot police threw teargas canisters at them while they were waiting for their leaders to arrive in the car park area.

Upon entering the courtroom, Sadza went straight to the magistrate’s chair and sat while his friend was waiting for his turn. An alert police officer arrested the duo.

All courts were briefly adjourned after teargas canisters were thrown at the magistrates’ court entrance resulting in people inside struggling to breathe.

Some of the demonstrators were banging doors and walls, while others were singing songs denouncing police brutality while inside the court rooms.

A woman fell unconscious after inhaling teargas in the court and was rushed to a waiting car outside.

MDC-T secretary general Douglas Mwonzora briefly addressed demonstrators about the High Court order authorizing the opposition march to go ahead.

They then sang, denouncing police who were standing about 10 metres away.

However, their joy was shortlived after the riot police reacted by spraying water cannons and throwing teargas at them. The demonstrators fled in different directions.