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  • Strikes and Protests 2007/8 - Index of articles

  • Churches in Bulawayo defy police ban
    The Zimbabwean
    May 28, 2007

    CHURCHES in Zimbabwe's second largest city of Bulawayo dubbed Churches in Zimbabwe (CIB) coalition on Saturday defied a police order and held Operation Murambatsvina commemorations in the city despite threats against holding the event.

    Police had declared the event barred under the notorious Public Order and Security Act (POSA) despite the fact that it was a church gathering.

    Under POSA, Zimbabweans are supposed to seek police clearance before holding meetings or demonstrations. But churches are exempted from seeking clearance for their gatherings and sermons.

    Said Pastor Raymond Motsi, a spokesperson for the CIB that organized the event: "This is a church gathering that needs no authorization and that is why we did not heed the police ban."

    However, victims of the operation, in their testimonies, said they still had no accommodation as they did not benefit from the re-construction exercise, Operation Hlalani Kuhle/Garikai.

    They claimed they 'are now worse off due to the grinding economic crises.' Estimates by the United Nations say over 700 000 Zimbabweans were affected by the operation.

    Police under the clean up Operation were demolishing thousands of dwellings and makeshift stalls of small traders saying they were unlicensed.

    President Robert Mugabe defended the Operation saying it was necessary because the cities were overrun with dirt and criminals and had become 'havens of illicit and criminal practices.which could not be allowed to go on.'- CAJ News.

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