Police formally charge abducted MDC activists from their hospital beds

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By Anna Chibamu

POLICE have formally charged three female MDC Alliance activists who were abducted and tortured by suspected state security agents some two weeks ago for conducting a street demonstration during the country’s lockdown period.

The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights confirmed Tuesday Harare West MP Joanna Mamombe, activists Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova will stand trial for “intent to promote public violence, breach of peace and breaking Covid-19 regulations under Statutory Instrument (SI99) of 2020”.

The three are hospitalised at a private Harare hospital when they were allegedly subjected to acts of assault, torture and sexual abuse.

They were allegedly seized from the hands of the police at Harare Central by men who were driving an unmarked Noah and driven to a place outside Harare to face the horrendous acts.

Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi told parliament last week the three will face the music for the public demonstration they staged in Harare’s Warren Park suburb.

They were protesting over government’s failure to provide food and other necessities to millions of citizens who were taken off their sources of income when government decreed its lockdown against the spread of coronavirus.

Foreign Affairs Minister Sibusiso Moyo said Monday that while the state placed seriousness to claims of abuse by the activists, it would not refrain from its bid to prosecute the young politicians.

The activists have been asked to sign some warned and cautioned statements by the police.