22 August 2018

Zimbabwe: Mnangagwa Critic Charged Over Facebook Comments

ZIMBABWEAN authorities have arrested Munyaradzi Shoko, the leader of the Children of Zimbabwe War Veterans' Association (Cozwa), a known critic of President-elect Emmerson Mnangagwa and charged him with criminal nuisance for allegedly posting some offensive statements on Facebook against the ZANU PF party leader.

Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers arrested Shoko on Tuesday 21 August 2018 and detained him at Harare Central Police Station, where they charged him with criminal nuisance as defined in section 46 as read with paragraph 2 (v) of the third schedule of the Criminal Law (Codification Reform) Act Chapter 9:23.

ZRP officers claimed that Shoko, who is represented by Moses Nkomo of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights posted some statements on Facebook between March and May 2018 criticising Mnangagwa and which read; "At one time he beat up his own biological mother, he was later suspected for killing his own family head-boy. He was pinpointed for being the brains behind Ndebele 1980s scum. His name is generally associated with evil and devilish deeds. Today he is pleading for ur vote. WHAT A SHAME!!!!!!!!."

ZRP officers said Shoko's statements were likely to create a nuisance and were likely to interfere with the ordinary comfort, peace or quietness of the public.

ZRP officers also charged Shoko with public violence as defined in section 36 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23 for allegedly participating in protests staged in Harare early this month over delays in announcing the results of the harmonised elections held last month.

ZRP officers alleged that Shoko engaged in acts of violence in Harare's Central Business District on Wednesday 01 August 2018 together with some MDC Alliance party supporters during a demonstration held in the capital city to protest against the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission's management of the harmonised elections held on Monday 30 July 2018, which reportedly resulted in the destruction of property and left six people dead after they were shot by some members of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces.

Shoko was also charged with assault as defined in section 89 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23 for allegedly assaulting Energy Mutodi, a ZANU PF member on 25 August 2017 at Holiday Inn Hotel in Harare.

Meanwhile, ZRP officers on Tuesday 21 August 2018 arrested and charged Musa Chibaya, a resident in Gweru in Midlands province and charged him with malicious damage to property as defined in section 140 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23.

ZRP officers claimed that Chibaya destroyed a windscreen of a vehicle after clashes broke out between ZRP officers, municipal police and some informal traders.

Chibaya, who is represented by Jabulani Mhlanga of ZLHR is expected to appear in court on Thursday 23 August 2018.

Source: Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights


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