By Senzeni Ncube and Tanake Mrewa
The leader of the newly established Freedom of Rights Under Sovereign (FORUS) party and two other officials were arrested, Tuesday, in Bulawayo for allegedly holding a political meeting without notifying regulatory authorities, a court has heard.
Manyara Irene Muyenziwa (44) and her accomplices Mono Minela (50) and Tinashe Muzamhindo (37) are facing a charge of contravening the provisions of the Maintenance of Peace and Order Act.
The trio appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Linear Khumalo who remanded them out of custody on free bail to September 16.
They are being represented by Lison Ncube of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.
State representative Hazel Ncube narrated to the court that the police received a tip-off to the effect that the trio convened an “illegal” meeting.
“There was a Forus political party banner erected printed Forus Freedom of Rights Under Sovereign on Facebook FORUS2021@gmail.com. Verifications were made through the Regulatory Authority of the area concerned and it was established that the convenes and organisers of the gathering had not notified the police or Regulatory Authority of the meeting resulting in the subsequent arrest of the accused persons.”
In an interview with CITE, the trio’s lawyer said the meeting was being attended by a total of 62 people, with most of them being women.
“The other 59 participants, who were mainly women and children were made to sign admission of guilt forms and were fined ZWL$1 000 each. According to the instructions that I received, these people were not attending a political meeting, instead, one of the accused persons is the president of FORUS and he had been invited as a guest of honor at a women empowerment meeting,” Ncube said.