The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has again thrown more sand at the opposition MDC party after it banned the opposition’s planned demonstration in Gweru.
This is the third demonstration to be banned following the Harare and Bulawayo demonstrations which were supposed to take place on Friday last week and yesterday. In both cases, the police cited security concerns.
In banning the Gweru demonstration, Officer Commanding Gweru Urban Police, Chief Superintendent T.Chikono wrote to the MDC saying,
The above matter is pertinent. The office acknowledges receipt of your office to hold public demonstrations dated 20 August 2019. This office is not in support of your notice because of the reasons that are attached on the prohibition notice.
However, the MDC claimed that it had not been given reasons why the demonstration was banned. Provincial Organising Secretary Lloyd Mukapiko told New Zimbabwe,
We have not been given the reasons for the demonstration ban. We just received a letter from the police telling us that they had banned our demonstration.
The MDC has unsuccessfully tried to challenge the bans at the courts twice, with the courts dismissing the challenges in both cases.
Commenting on the latest setback, MDC Vice President Tendai Biti said,
At 2100 hours last night Police in Gweru issued yet another Prohibition Order . We will go through another appeal process. Legalism and the rule of law is not stupidity or weakness. This regime must be exposed for what it is. An illegitimate paranoid, soulless vampire regime.