SW Radio Africa (London)

6 December 2012

Zimbabwe: Tsvangirai Picture Costs Cop His Job

A Gwanda-based police officer has been branded 'a danger to society' and sacked from his job for allegedly possessing a picture of MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai, according to reports.

Assistant Inspector William Mutsago, who was based at Gwanda Police Station in Matebeleland South, is said to have told his bosses that he was not responsible for the picture, which was saved on a memory card. He was nevertheless fired without compensation.

A statement from the MDC-T on Tuesday said Mutsago was summoned to a hearing in October last year, following an anonymous letter written against him. He was accused of engaging in activities likely to discredit the force, detained for 14 days and subsequently dismissed after his appeal was rejected.

During the hearing, Mutsago had argued that he was not the sole user of the memory card which was also used by other staff, including those in the press and public relations department.

Despite protesting his innocence, Gwanda Police Station has since written to the Public Service Commission calling for Mutsago to be blacklisted across public sector departments, describing him as a "danger to society", the MDC-T added.

Meanwhile Mutsago's wife, a constable also based at Gwanda station, is awaiting a ruling on the appeal she lodged, after she was charged with the same offence. The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights is reported to be handling Mutsago's case.

Last year, another police officer was fired for playing Simudza Ngerengere, a song by MDC-T parliamentarian Paul Madzore. Assistant Inspector Tedious Chisango, who was stationed at Ntabazinduna just outside Bulawayo, was accused of "teaching police recruits on regime change".

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