The Herald (Harare)

25 February 2013

Zimbabwe: Police Chief Warns NGOs On Nefarious Activities

POLICE Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri has warned political parties, non-governmental organisations and civic groups to desist from nefarious activities that threaten the security of the country. Comm-Gen Chihuri was speaking at a pass-out parade of 275 police officers in Harare where he said such organisations should operate according to their constitution.

"Do not do nefarious activities and should they do that and venture into areas not contained in their constitution, they must have themselves to blame and not the police," he said.

Comm-Gen Chihuri said during the referendum on a new constitution, the force had a constitutional mandate to ensure that such a milestone event was carried out in a peaceful and tranquil manner, allowing Zimbabweans to exercise their democratic rights without hindrance.

"I would like to assure the nation that the ZRP will remain highly visible and vigilant throughout the country in a determined endeavour to safeguard the prevailing peace and security," he said.

Comm-Gen Chihuri said he was aware of malcontents in some political parties who preach peace during the day before engaging in nefarious activities during the night.

"May I warn such unscrupulous elements bent on propagating and perpetuating violence in a naive agenda of tarnishing the image of the country, that the police will mantain a zero tolerance on any forms of violence," he said and that the long arm of the law shall descend heavily on these malcontents irrespective of their status in life.

Comm-Gen Chihuri said he was aware that some political parties had resorted to some unorthodox methods of gathering at night in violation of the Public Order and Security Act Chapter 11:17.

He said the force was aware of some people or political parties who were distributing illegal communication devices to some unsuspecting members of the public.

"I thus, call upon all political and civic leaders to be exemplary and to preach the gospel of peace and tolerance at all times. In this regard, I urge all Zimbabweans irrespective of their political persuasions to revere peace and shun violence," he said.

On Wednesday, Zimbabwe Peace Project led by Jestina Mukoko was fingered in a suspected espionage case after police confiscated documents and communication devices it was distributing to its recruits countrywide.

Police found the unregistered organisation with communication gadgetry that includes Eton Microlink radios and Huawei Ascend Y100 cellphones fitted with Geographical Positioning System (GPS) reportedly to be used in the run-up to the elections and the actual poll.

Under the secret project, political parties are identified with codes.

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