Statement On Police Brutality Outside Morgan Tsvangirai House

We, the Young Lawyers Association of Zimbabwe, have taken note of the events that took place this morning, 20 November 2019, wherein members of the Zimbabwe

Republic Police assaulted members of the public and MDC members outside Morgan Tsvangirai House, as they waited for Mr. Nelson Chamisa to deliver a statement.

We deplore the excessive use of force and indiscriminate violence by the police against their own countrymen and women and again call upon the State to hold those responsible to account.

There is no legal or moral basis for the police brutality witnessed this morning. Regardless of whether people were legally gathered or not, the conduct of the police:

  • violated the citizens’ constitutional right to freedom from violence in terms of section 52 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe,
  • was in breach of the police’s powers and duties in terms of section 13 of the Maintenance of Peace and Order Act;
  • demonstrated a failure by the police to adhere to the constitutional requirements to act as a professional and non-partisan police service in terms of Chapter 11 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.

We urge the State to urgently establish an independent complaints mechanism to investigate and address such abuses by members of the security services as required by section 210 of the Constitution.

As young lawyers in Zimbabwe, we are looking at substantive ways in which we can assist the victims of the violence by the police and undertake to do what we can to uphold and promote the rule of law in Zimbabwe. Members of the public can contact YLAZ on any of the above contact details with any relevant information.

Source: Young Lawyers Association of Zimbabwe (YLAZ)