Mutare cops disrupt Tsvangirai meeting

MUTARE - Belligerent police disrupted an MDC meeting at Queens Hall in Mutare yesterday when they insisted on sitting through the private deliberations of an internal party meeting — contrary to the provisions of the law.

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s spokesperson, Luke Tamborinyoka, said this had happened despite the fact that the party had notified the police of the private meeting by the MDC leader and other senior party leaders.

“Eight officers came and insisted on sitting through the meeting after one of the officers who had initially sneaked into the meeting was chucked out by alert members of the provincial leadership.

“Even after President Tsvangirai had finished his presentation, the police insisted on coming back to sit through the remainder of the sensitive and private deliberations on election strategy.

“The provincial leadership alerted the police of the provisions of Posa, which did not entitle them to attend private meetings that are not rallies, but they said their superiors had told them to come and hear what Tsvangirai was planning for the party.

“This left the provincial leadership with no option but to cancel the rest of the deliberations as the police kept insisting on sitting through the private deliberations, contrary to the provisions of the law, Tamborinyoka said.

He said the action of the police in Mutare confirmed “what has become wrong with our politics”.

“The police, who have often acted as appendages of Zanu PF, cannot insist on sitting through private, internal deliberations of a political party in contravention of the very rule of law they are supposed to uphold.

“Allowing them to sit through the private deliberations would have been the same as inviting the police into the national executive meeting of the MDC,” Tamborinyoka said.

MDC provincial chairperson David Chimhini said he was also shocked when he saw that “the whole place was teeming with intelligence officials”.

“We don’t know why they had come in such big numbers,” he said.

MDC chief whip, Innocent Gonese, said Posa did not apply to internal party meetings — adding that his party had tirelessly tried to hammer this point home to the police, without success.

“Posa does not apply to such meetings where an organ or structure of a political party is concerned…its very unfortunate that we have debated this in parliament, we have tried to explain to some of the officers.

“In the instant case, we wanted to go to the provisions of Posa to illustrate that their interpretation was clearly misplaced. They obviously were not willing because the law was clearly not on their side. We hope that in future the police would acquaint themselves with the provisions of the law,” Gonese said.

Meanwhile, Tsvangirai will address a rally at Hauna Growth Point in Mutasa North today, before proceeding to address another rally at Chimbudzi Business Centre in Buhera Central on Saturday.

On Sunday, the MDC president will wind up his Manicaland tour with another rally at Matsika Business Centre in Makoni West — amid hopes that police will not disrupt these gatherings.

Comments (2)

The actions of intelligence are a sign of how scared they are of the true opposition in Zimbabwe. however I am worried about the behavior of the same security force or police because they are supposed to behave professionally right from Mr. A Chihuri to the least policeman. They should instead question the motive behind such regardless whether its from Mugabe or Bonyongo, Chiwenga or Mnangagwa. They also need to realise that the same fear that is being displayed by ZANU PF regime is the very cause of the high economic degradation of the country since there is no freedom necessary to drive the wheels of the economy. The same police and whoever in the security is being treated like a dog by the same system he is supposed to destroy to claim his citizen rights and personal respect as a Zimbabwean police.

Amin - 27 July 2015

Typical of a dying administration. Police are known to have arrested MDC complainants and to hunt down perceived opposition assailants until they caught them, tormented and sent to court. These fellows were not interested in looking at what Posa or anything at all is, they were acting exactly as they were told to do by a very senior official in the Party. They have no way to refuse orders especially from their civilian masters.

Mr Dete - 19 August 2015

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