via Shamed ZRP vows Budiriro vengeance 31/05/2014 NewZimbabwe
ZRP vowed to descend in force on Budiriro Sunday to round up members of an apostolic sect which, in scenes likely to have shaken the government, battered a woefully outnumbered posse of riot cops on Friday, leaving some injured.
ZRP spokesperson Charity Charamba said members of the Johanne Masowe yeChishanu apostolic sector who attacked the police officers can expect the law to respond with ruthless efficiency.
Many Zimbabweans have described the shock incident as poetic justice on a police force long used to having its way with ordinary people, beating up peaceful protesters and violently crushing opposition to President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF party.
However, that fearsome reputation was dented somewhat Friday, as members of the sect set upon the handful of riot police officers dispatched to their shrine, mercilessly battered them with their long religious canes, forcing the cops to flee for dear life.
The skirmishes concluded a horrendous weekend for the ZRP, after police commissioner general Augustine Chihuri collapsed in a heap at a pass out parade for graduating recruits at Moris Depot on Thursday.
Chihuri passed out while standing next to Mugabe and later blamed the incident on his shoes.
Not a good week for the police … ZRP boss collapses at pass out parade
“The police will arrest everyone who assaulted the police officers and journalists who were on duty. We do not tolerate church members who beat up police officers and journalists,” she said.
“They will be arrested and we urge all church members to lead by example. What will the nation and our neighbours say when we have church members behaving in such a manner? That’s not the way church members should communicate.
“There were children at that meeting. How are they going to think or behave when their parents beat up police officers? People will be picked up.”
The cops were attacked after they accompanied Bishop Johannes Ndanga of the Apostolic Christian Council of Zimbabwe (ACCZ) and other members of the group to the Budiriro sect which is led by one Madzibaba Ishmael.
Bishop Ndanga wanted to enforce a ban against the sect over human rights violations that include alleged denial of children’s educational rights as well as abuses of girls.
Officer commanding ZRP Harare province Senior Assistant Commissioner Clement Munoriarwa said everyone involved would be arrested.
“We are not investigating allegations that were raised by Bishop Johannes Ndanga from the Apostolic Christian Council of Zimbabwe at the moment.
“The police have a unit that will be moving in (Sunday) to Budiriro to pick everyone who was involved. We will not tolerate that behaviour where we have members from a church attacking the police and journalists.
“We will deal with them. The police force does not tolerate such behaviour where church members act and behave like gangsters or activists.
“People are going to be arrested and that is our role. When one breaks the law, we move in and that is what is going to happen in Budiriro.”