Zim Authorities Free Detained Protestors

Masvingo, April 17, 2014 – Zimbabwean authorities have ended the detention of two Masvingo residents who were arrested early this week for allegedly assaulting Masvingo Mayor Hubert Fidze over the city council’s poor service delivery.

On Tuesday, police arrested Tamutswa Chikonyora and Prosper Tiringindi, who are members of the United Masvingo Residents and Ratepayers Association and charged them with contravening of Section 89 (1) (a) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act.

The police claimed that Chikonyora and Tiringindi, who are represented by Martin Mureri of Matutu and Mureri Legal Practitioners, who is a member of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, assaulted Fidze when they led residents in staging an unsanctioned demonstration in which they attempted to hand over a petition to the Masvingo Mayor airing out their grievances.

Chikonyora and Tiringindi who endured two nights in detention at Masvingo Police Station were freed on Thursday after the complainant, Fidze failed to attend court proceedings. 

The State indicated that it will proceed by way of summons if it intends to pursue the matter.

Local council authorities have been blamed by residents for failing to run the affairs of city councils. The local authorities have failed to provide water and other services to residents who have to resort to fetching water from some unsafe sources.