A Maverick Citizen conversation with Pastor Evan Mawarire, a fighter for freedom in Zimbabwe who faces a trial for treason -- for the second time.
In 2016, Pastor Evan Mawarire rose out of obscurity and emerged as a leader in Zimbabwe when he stood up to Robert Mugabe by mobilising Zimbabweans around their national flag. He did this by recording, This Flag, A Lament of Zimbabwe, a very moving video that he put on YouTube.
The video went viral and catalysed a spontaneous and indelible movement that became known as the "This Flag Movement". In 2017, civil society campaign SaveSouth Africa used the same idea when mobilising people to take on corruption and State Capture under then-president Jacob Zuma.
Zimbabwe is once again in the news for the wrong reasons, with reports of increasing crackdowns on civil society. Last week Dr Peter Magombeyi, an outspoken critic of the government whose biggest "crime" was to mobilise for better pay and an improving health system, was reportedly kidnapped. He is still missing.
In August 2019, Pastor Mawarire was a keynote speaker at the Amnesty International Global Assembly in Johannesburg. Mark Heywood and Nomatter Ndebele stopped him for a conversation. This is how...