By Professor Matodzi
Harare, July 12, 2016 – AUTHORITIES on Tuesday charged a local clergyman, Pastor Evan Mawarire who is prominent for mounting a successful anti-government protest against President Robert Mugabe’s failed leadership.
The #ThisFlag campaigner is being charged for allegedly inciting members of the public to engage in public violence.
Mawarire reported at Harare Central Police Station early Tuesday accompanied by his lawyer Harrison Nkomo of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.
After charging Mawarire, police insisted on conducting a search of his residence in Harare’s Avondale suburb.
It was not clear what police were interested in securing from the outspoken clergy and whether they had a search warrant authorising their action as is required by law.
Mawarire, through his #Thisflag campaign, has emphasised that it was time for Mugabe’s government to step down for mismanaging the country.
Together with other campaigners, Mawarire mobilised and urged Zimbabweans to stage a crippling work boycott last week which was successful and rattled Mugabe’s administration.
Police responded to the protests by arresting more than 300 people who were charged with committing public violence, according to Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.