By Leopold Munhende
MDC Alliance president, Nelson Chamisa has demanded an independent inquiry into what he says has been the capture of the judiciary by the government.
This follows Harare magistrate Bianca Makwande’s decision last week to remand Harare West MP Joanna Mamombe in custody for two weeks pending examination of her mental health by two government doctors.
Mamombe is said to be suffering from anxiety after being abducted by state security agents earlier this year and spending days in remand prison for staging an unsanctioned demonstration.
She is also facing charges of faking her abduction. Facing similar charges are; MDC Alliance female youth activists; Netsai Marova, and Cecilia Chimbiri.
Said the opposition leader, “The unlawful detention and sending to Chikurubi maximum prison of youth leader and MP Mamombe is another new low, a classic case of continuing victimisation. It is clear that the state which is implicated in this case cannot deliver justice. We demand an independent inquiry,” Chamisa said.
“This continued persecution of these emblems of change is a direct threat to democratic tenets and freedom. Oppressors fear the power of the future that the young women represent. We stand with the young and fearless. We fight for their right to dignity, freedom and justice.”
Added Chamisa: “The MDC trio represents what Zimbabwe could be if we made room for the new. They are women of courage and conviction. The trio and all young people are the embodiment of a new Zimbabwe we can create in which young women can freely participate in political activity and nation-building.”
The MDC Alliance accuses Zanu PF of capturing the judiciary system and weaponising it against dissenting voices.
Dozens of anti-government protestors have been arrested and remanded in custody since the Covid-19 lockdown began in March this year.
These include MDC Alliance deputy chairperson Job Sikhala who was released from Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison after weeks of detention. He was granted bail after being remanded in custody of charges of inciting public violence.
Journalist Hopewell Chin’ono, Transform Zimbabwe (TZ) president Jacob Ngarivhume and MDC Alliance youth leader Godfrey Kurauone spent over 40 days each in prison facing charges of inciting public violence before their release.