Mawarire denied UK entry

LONDON - Zimbabwean pastor Evan Mawarire who is leading protests against the brutal dictatorship of President Robert Mugabe has been refused entry into the UK.

Mawarire was told by immigration officials his visa had been refused just hours before he was due to board a flight to London.

He’s been instrumental in the “This Flag” campaign — an uprising against the leadership of Mugabe.

He was held in prison for several days after convincing his fellow countrymen and women to take part in a general strike but was released after protests. He was then forced to flee Zimbabwe.

Mugabe, 92, has described the pastor as a “disgrace”.

Mawarire is currently in the United States but was due to give a speech in London on Tuesday night.

The reasons for his visa being rejected were not immediately clear but Premier understands he is appealing.

An event in Parliament, where Mawarire was due to speak to the Africa All Party Parliamentary Group, has been cancelled.

Premier has contacted the Home Office for further information.

Writing on his Twitter account, Mawarire said, “My visit to the UK has been delayed due to visa not yet being issued. Looking forward to the UK interactions once it comes through #ThisFlag”.

Mawarire is one of anti-Mugabe activists — including exiled music star Thomas Mapfumo — who are expected in the UK where they will mobilise Diasporans to bring back the troubled southern African nation into the spotlight.

The UK tour comes as pro-democracy activists are now devising new strategies to confront Mugabe — Zimbabwe’s only president since independence 36 years ago — after his government’s repressive and brutal clampdown on demonstrations and imposition of a ban on protests in Harare.

According to UK-based Free Zimbabwe Advocacy (FZA) group, prominent activists such as Patson Dzamara, Sten Zvorwadza as well as Linda Masarara and Mapfumo will address gatherings in Leicester and Dunstable to drum up support for their course.

Dzamara is famed for the #OccupyAfricaUnitySquare anti-Mugabe crusade — started by his abducted and still missing brother, Itai.

Mawarire led one of the fiercest resistance movements against Mugabe’s rule, leading to successful country shutdown in July this year.

He fled the country in fear, but has remained instrumental in Zimbabwe’s quest for Mugabe to step down, following allegations of running down the country’s economy and failure to deal with corruption.

His #ThisFlag movement became the face of Zimbabwean people’s struggle, ushering a new era of a fearless generation that has braved to confront the most feared Mugabe, who has maintained a firm grip on power since 1980 when the country got its independence from the British colonisers.

Mawarire’s #ThisFlag pioneered a host of other #Hashtags that have given the nonagenarian leader sleepless nights and by any standard is posing him with the greatest threat to his coveted throne that he has ever known in independent Zimbabwe.

Pursuant to a number of protests against his rule, Mugabe went on to issue a ban on demonstrations in central Harare using the controversial Public Order and Security Act. 

Comments (6)

ko makatotiza karere,hapana zvamurikuita mr mawawire .... kwese uko hakuna basa kwamuri ikoko hapana anodakuzwa ne zvabhobho.... murikuda kurima kwakarimwa kare hakuna sora....go back kuzim then join others like morgan and amai mujuru... your speeches I LIKE THEM ......kana vazvipira wotoshinga but kunze hakuna basa.....ukaramba uriko hausimurume vakangofanana nevamwe sakani UK YAKURAMBIRA VISA DZOKA KUMUSHA.

dofo - 20 October 2016

Mawarire did his part, he stood up, spoke and was heard. The problem is with you and me, we want others to risk their lives for us while we pretend to play clever and intelligent. Well done Mawarire, well done for taking a stand and leaving in one piece.

Samaita - 20 October 2016

Mawarire is at work , working for his family . He wants to open new ground with new paymasters in the UK . If he wants to work for the people he should come home and campaign for who ever he supports . Zvekunze kwenyika ndezvekutsvaka mari izvo . Huya kumusha .

Hayibo! - 20 October 2016

Thank you Evan Mawarire I've watched so many of your videos including your q.a at south african universities. You have told the undeniable, inescapable truth and it doesn't sit well this government. # THIS FLAG!

Young Zimbo - 20 October 2016

God bless you Evan Mawarire.

kelly - 21 October 2016

The #This Flag movement by Pastor Evan Mawarire will gather momentum if he shares his passion about about dislodging Zimbabwe from Mugabe's clutches with Zimbabwean Diasporans in the US and UK. By addressing crowds of Americans and British, he will reap sympathy and finances but not active support to effectuate meaningful action at home where it is needed most. So far, he has not done that. I hope this suggestion gets to him before he runs out of steam. RIGHT ON MWANA WEVU!

j. m zwana - 13 December 2016

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