Police threats spark backlash

via Police threats spark backlash – NewsDay Zimbabwe August 10, 2015 by Xolisani Ncube

HUMAN rights defenders and political parties yesterday said police threats on private media journalists covering a job cuts demonstration in Harare on Saturday had exposed the State’s hidden hand in the disappearance of journalist-cum-activist Itai Dzamara in March this year.

Some rogue police officers over the weekend briefly detained three journalists — Obey Manayiti (NewsDay), AFP correspondent Reagan Mashavave and freelance ANN7 TV correspondent Pindai Dube — and threatened them with disappearance for covering the event.

The newsmen, who were covering the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU)-led protests against job losses in Harare, were bundled into a police truck and detained for a while at Harare Central Police Station where one of the officers said they would “go the Dzamara way”.

Main opposition MDC-T spokesperson Obert Gutu said from the utterances of police details who nabbed the journalists, they were confirming that they “know where Dzamara is and who abducted him”.

“That is very insensitive and cruel for police details to say such words. One would be perfectly correct to think that the State knows where Dzamara is and as such, we call on President Robert Mugabe and his fascist regime to release Dzamara from wherever they are hiding him,” Gutu said.

Dzamara was abducted by suspected State security agents near his Glen View home on March 9 and his whereabouts have remained a mystery five months down the line.

ZCTU secretary-general Japhet Moyo said it was unprofessional for police officers to make such insensitive statements when the country was still seized with Dzamara’s case.

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights spokesperson Kumbirai Mafunda said the utterances by police confirmed the State had a hand in Dzamara’s disappearance.

“The State has denied ever being involved in disappearance of Dzamara and now we have police officers threatening journalists that they will do a Dzamara on them. It puts the police to be suspects in the disappearance of the activists and for us as Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, such intimidation is unconstitutional,” Mafunda said.

Police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba, however, declined to comment on the matter.

“I know nothing with regards to that. I can’t comment on an issue that I don’t know whether it’s authentic and have no information on it,” she said.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 3
  • comment-avatar
    mandevu 7 years ago

    Here they go again

  • comment-avatar
    vimba 7 years ago

    Thats what they do even the tym of gukurahundi hundreds of people dissappeared

  • comment-avatar
    TruthBTold 7 years ago

    Wonderful news for any FDI. No wonder no one will touch Zimbabwe. The bad news for the cops and the powers that be is that God is watching! EVERYTHING! JUDGMENT WILL COME WHEN THEY LEAST EXPECT IT!