The police yesterday accused journalists for leaking and circulating sensitive pictures of MDC Alliance activist, Cecilia Chimbiri taken at a private hospital in Waterfalls, Harare, which they said were meant for investigations.
BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA
In May, nude pictures of Chimbiri, one of the three MDC Alliance officials that included MP Joannah Mamombe and Netsai Marova taken at the hospital where they were undergoing treatment went viral and the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) alleged that the pictures were taken by one of the police officers conducting a forensic investigation on the trio.
Lawyers representing the three MDC Alliance activists, who were allegedly abducted and tortured by State security agents, filed a notice to sue Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga over the conduct of one of his officers, who leaked nude pictures of one of their clients captured for the purposes of investigation.
The police wrote to ZLHR director Roslyn Hanzi about the outcome of the report of complaint against unlawful circulation of sensitive photographs of Chimbiri captured by a forensic police officer and notice of intention to sue in terms of the State liabilities.
“Investigations carried out in the matter indicate that several people including journalists visited our client, Cecilia Chimbiri, Joanah Mamombe and Netsai Marova and had an opportunity to take photographs while they were detained at Parktown Hospital in Waterfalls,” the police wrote to Hanzi.
“It is, therefore, difficult to determine the owner of the camera that took the photos of our clients which went viral on social media. May you be assured that the photos taken by police were purely for investigation purposes and were taken in terms of the law.”
The police did not explain how the journalists, barred from accessing the three then, could have taken the pictures.