Zimbabweans celebrate police bashing

via Zimbabweans celebrate police bashing | SW Radio Africa by Mthulisi Mathuthu on Monday, June 2, 2014

Public resentment against the authorities has been laid bare after Zimbabweans openly celebrated the beating of police officers and state journalists by members of the Johane Masowe yeChishanu church last Friday.

The fight happened when the President of the Apostolic Christian Council of Zimbabwe, Johannes Ndanga, told hundreds of the sect members at their holy shrine that he had banned the church for abuse of women and girls. He was in the company of 20 anti-riot police.

But members of the Masowe sect reacted angrily to the bid to shut down their church and assaulted the anti-riot police. Pictures showed bloodied police officers and ZBC journalists fleeing, while others lay helplessly on the ground as the bald headed worshippers beat them with their shepherd’s staffs.

At least 25 members of the Masowe sect have been arrested so far with some of them having appeared in court Monday, where they were remanded in custody.

The Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum suggested the police may have erred by invading the shrine, saying the Budiriro incident may have been prompted by political interests of the elite who want to use the various sects against each other for political gain.

Allegations against the sect have been reported for some time, but have always been ignored by the authorities. Many ZANU PF officials, including President Robert Mugabe, have previously attended the Masowe sermons in clear attempts to entrench their political hold, leading to the belief that the sect was untouchable.

The fight on Friday generated huge public interest as Zimbabweans applauded the Masowe members for giving the police a taste of their own medicine. A NewsDay editorial said the Budiriro incident was a case of the ZANU PF government’s ‘multitude of followers’ turning against their masters.

Across the globe Zimbabweans took to the internet to express their joy at the cops’ fate. The social media was awash with images of the fight, while a video lampooning the police went viral within hours.

Harare-based SW Radio Africa correspondent Simon Muchemwa said the video was a ‘free weekend present’ for many residents who openly shared it and danced to the music. Muchemwa said by choosing to celebrate the bashing of the police, instead of sympathizing with the alleged victims of the Masowe sect, the public demonstrated the extent of the resentment against the government.

Muchemwa said that even as some of the members of the Masowe sect appeared in court Monday it was clear that public sympathy lay with them. He said ‘everywhere’ the sect members are seen as ‘brave heroes.’

Political analyst Itai Dzamara said: ‘It is unfortunate that the issue of the violation of women and children has been overshadowed by the bashing of the police. But it is indicative of the widespread hatred for the police in the country. The police routinely abuse people and so the people are very happy that they have also been bashed.’
The police in Zimbabwe routinely react with heavy handedness to public attempts at free expression as they clamp down on demonstrations, rallies and discussion meetings. Traffic cops also force people to pay bribes and spot fines for cooked-up offences, doing so with apparent government blessing.

Last week SW Radio Africa reported on a senior government official who pleaded with the national tax collector to allow the police to continue their unaccountable revenue collection through spot fines, in what observers say was open endorsement of corruption.

 

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13 comments on “Zimbabweans celebrate police bashing
  1. zanupf fear me says:

    Cry baby criminal cops. Spread the hidings afield till we free

  2. Chaka says:

    United we will continue to beat them up

  3. mark longhurst says:

    The cops are not ‘policemen’ they do not support and protect their community,they are complicit in corruption and crime, they have zero morals, they beat children and women,they are Zanu stooges, they should ALL be stood down at the same time as Zanupf is destroyed !!

  4. Makrivhazhi+ngoda says:

    well outlined problms but yur political solution is influenced by Fear and appeasement policies.What zim wants is not a merely represation of al pol parties in e Exc,Judi legislature just to please political A or B.What is needed are energetic,able bodied and charismatic leades NB numbers frm pol parties dnt matter here.

  5. The police were doing their job, it is just unfortunate that they are used by Zanu to harass people that is why people are not in sympathy. What did they do when MDC supporters were attacked in Harare when Morgan had left the rally?

  6. Senzachena says:

    Stand together, let tens of thousands take to the streets, the Police and army will run away, if caught, beat the hell out of them. We need much more of this type of action. The writing is on the wall.

    • Tichatonga says:

      try it and you will see how we will bash the hell out of you. zimbabwe is different from other lawless nations, we have enough human resources and weaponry to deal with any uprising. we have the police, prison and the army ready to quash any illegal uprisings. try it and see the consequences

      • wakatama says:

        To my friend Tichatonga I say yes, we know that Zimbabwe is a very lawful which does not tolerate lawlessness. You have the weaponry and human resources to deal with any uprising but be aware that you cannot continue to oppress the MASSES for ever. CHAZVIMBA CHAPUTIKA!! CHANHUWA CHAWORA!!! TONGAI NEGINYA TIONE . We are all children of one God

    • maipisi says:

      It can only happen in a fool’s paradise. Security forces of Zimbabwe are obliged by the constitution to keep peace and security in the country. Its only fools who dream of anarchy and fortunately the majority of Zimbabweans are law abiding and peace loving.

  7. biend says:

    Police should be there to protect its citizens,not brutalise,now the state has turned against its people and its gonna continue doing so,one day the tidy will rise like a tsunami

  8. moyokumusha says:

    A professional policeman is mandated with upholding the laws and the protection of life and property. That was the BSAP but ZRP are armed thugs and enforcers for the crooks. They got what they deserved.

    What a mess our country is now in and how are we going to change it for the best when you have no professional army or police to protect the victims. I really do not see us getting anywhere without the help of the UN who will have to send in foreign police and army to do that job in the period of transition from these ZANUPF crooks to a civilised democratically elected government.

    And before the bible bashers start preaching ( I have noticed a lot of this on this site recently) I see no action against the minority that suppress the majority and are now trying to supress the religious. it is these same people who preach and pray for peace who have had to take the law into their own hands and met out their justice and protection. Lets see how many churches contribute to these peoples lawyers fees, I bet none.

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