Woman files $13 500 lawsuit against Chombo, Chihuri over brutality

Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo

A 62-YEAR-OLD Chitungwiza woman, who recently grabbed media attention globally after she was brutally assaulted by riot police officers during an anti-government demonstration in Harare, has filed a $13 500 lawsuit against Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo and Police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri.


Lillian Chinyerere (62) was on August 26 this year, caught in the crossfire and left injured, as police pursued rioters, who had fled into the Harare Magistrates’ Courts building.

She is demanding $5 000 for pain and suffering, $5 000 for contumelia, $2 500 as special damages for loss of income and another $1 000 as special damages for past and future medical expenses.

According to summons filed at the High Court last week, Chinyenyere gave Chihuri and Chombo 10 working days to respond.

She is being represented by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.

Chinyenyere claimed that on August 26, riot police pounced on her while she was seated near the court entrance and kicked her several times with booted feet and hit her with truncheons.

“She raised her arms to surrender and inquired as to the reason for the assault,” read the summons.

“The police officers responded in vernacular and told her to move away or risk dying for no cause. They said if she did not move, she would meet her death.

“She protested and complained that she suffers from high blood pressure and is also diabetic, but this did not stop the assault on her person.

“Chinyerere lay strewn on the ground unable to stand up due to injuries suffered and it was only a well-wisher, whom she later learnt was Patson Dzamara, who assisted her to get up and go to seek medical assistance.”

The video footage of her assault was widely circulated in both local and international media.

Chinyerere said she was humiliated by the incident and was also left injured.

She claimed she can no longer continue with her tailoring job due to the injuries and has been relying on well-wishers for her sustenance.

The police have been roundly condemned for their heavy handedness, particularly on rights activists.


  1. I’m very ashamed of belonging to a country with such savages for policemen. It hurts my standing as a man and makes me wonder how our country collapsed into such a mess with heartless savages in uniform. I wish the poor old lady could sue them to high heaven. She is asking for too little from the marauding authorities. She deserves at least $250,000 for her troubles. It’s money robbed from us at road blocks after all.

  2. Good luck to you Lillian. Go get ’em!! I hope the cops are not only fined heavily, but then given a custodial sentence of at least 10 years in Chikurubi. Animals, the lot of them, and they need to be taught a lesson.Chombo and Chihuri also need to go to jail for a couple of years.

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