Zimbabwe Journalist Arrested After Scuffle With Cops

Zimbabwe Republic Police officers (file photo).

Harare — A Zimbabwean court has granted bail to a freelance journalist arrested at an accident scene under bizarre charges of disorderly conduct.

Conrad Gweru, a freelance journalist, has been arraigned in court for taking photographs of Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers ineptly responding to the accident.

Under Zimbabwe's repressive legislation, he is accused of "unlawfully and intentionally engaging in a disorderly conduct by taking pictures and shouting at ZRP officers" following an accident involving a commuter omnibus.

According to prosecutors, this was with the intention of provoking a breach of peace.

Harare Magistrate, Edwin Marecha, has granted Gweru US$30 (R424) bail pending his next appearance on October 25.

Gweru has been remanded out of custody.

He is compelled to reside at given residential address and not to interfere with witnesses.

Zimbabwe is notorious for repressions against journalists especially under the authoritarian regime of longtime leader, Robert Mugabe, ousted in a coup last November.

Mugabe is lauded for liberating his country from decades of colonialism by Britain.

An academic with multiple degrees, he is credited with instilling discipline and work ethic among Zimbabweans, but violating their rights with his iron-fisted rule.

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