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Harassment of citizens must stop
Human Rights Association (ZimRights)
July 03, 2012
greatly perturbed by the continued persecution of human rights activists.
Seven member of
Women of Zimbabwe Arise are reported to have spent a night behind
bars yesterday for reasons yet to be disclosed. Two more a re reportedly
missing while the seven are said to have been denied breakfast this
morning at Western Commonage police station.
The seven were
reportedly arrested on two separate incidents. In a statement, WOZA
suspects that the crackdown is somehow the state's retaliation
to the "occupy
and demand the draft constitution campaign" that WOZA
has been conducting since May 2012. The sketchy information points
to the effect that the seven seem to be facing accusations of writing
their demands on roads sing paint. The messages include among others,
"Fire Chihuri (the partisan police commissioner); devolution
for development; we want separation of powers and we want education."
The seven who
are Vigilant Lunga, Violet Dube, Theresa Phiri, Catherine Dhliwayo,
Eunice Moyo, Mpikelelo Moyo and Sibongiel Lumbile were reportedly
loaded into a van this morning heading to where the messages were
written. The missing two are Miriam Ngcebetsha and Ottilia Dube
who were arrested at Matshobana at 7pm yesterday.
This is clear
indication that the country is still in dire crisis. Citizens should
be allowed to exercise their rights, and this must be ensured before
any election can take place. The state must protect its citizens
and not become the main threat to security, as is the situation
in Zimbabwe. We commend WOZA for their steadfast and undeterred
efforts in spite of the persecution they have encountered. Citizens
have the right to food even in a case where they are found guilt.
It is disturbing to note that in this case they are denied such
a fundamental right before even investigations started. We demand
the restoration of their liberties forthwith. Police must investigate
to arrest and not to arrest to investigate.
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