Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition calls for the unconditional release of Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) President, Takudzwa Ngadziore who was arrested on September 10, 2020 for staging a peaceful demonstration at the premises of Impala Car Rentals.
The peaceful demonstration came following reports that a vehicle belonging to Impala Car Rentals was used by state agents in the abduction of ZimLive Editor, Mduduzi Mathuthu’s nephew, Tawanda Muchehiwa in Bulawayo on July 30, 2020.
The arrest of Ngadziore, who is also CiZC Youth Committee Chairperson is a flagrant violation of the right to peaceful protests as enshrined under Section 59 of the Zimbabwean constitution.
CiZC is appalled by the continuous wave of arbitrary arrests, torture and abduction of civic society and opposition activists as well as journalists which continues to taint the human rights record of the ‘new dispensation’.
On September 10, 2020 MDC Alliance Councilor, Godfrey Kurauone was released from prison after spending 46 days on frivolous charges of obstructing traffic and calling for the removal of President Mnangagwa on July 31, 2020.
The same day, Journalists, Frank Chikore and Sam Takawira were acquitted following their arrest on May 22, 2020.
The two journalists were arrested for filming the abducted trio of MDC Alliance members, Joana Mamombe, Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova and spent five days in detention.
We call upon the government of Zimbabwe to uphold citizen’s fundamental rights including the right to protest peacefully, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly and freedom of association.
The iron fist approach in dealing with dissenting voices is unacceptable in a democracy and current trends in Zimbabwe have proved that the country is further plunging into a constitutional crisis despite assurances of a ‘new dispensation’ following the removal of the late President Robert Mugabe who is well known for employing similar tactics.
Persecution by prosecution seems to be the order of the day.
CiZC further calls for independence of the judiciary and that law enforcement agencies should not be seen to be acting as an appendage of the ruling party in the execution of their duties.
The law must be applied in a fair and impartial manner.