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Woza and Moza activists arrested during protest march
Tichaona Sibanda, SW Radio Africa
October 15, 2007
At least 75
activists from Women
of Zimbabwe Arise and Men of Zimbabwe Arise were arrested outside
the parliament building in central Harare, after staging a peaceful
demonstration against police brutality against its members.
Woza co-ordinator Jennie
Williams was one of those arrested and taken to the central police
station in the capital. Patuma Sonyowa who took part in the protest
march said police needed five trucks to ferry the activists from
parliament to the central police station.
'We started our
march from First Street right up the parliament door steps where
we intended to handover the report on political violence against
our activists. It was also here where police ordered us to disperse
but we refused and instead sat on the pavement. We were singing
songs that denounced police brutality and we also called for a new
constitution and the return of the rule of law,' Sonyowa said.
She said police took
away all their banners and protest newsletters. Their lawyers were
denied access to the activists who were believed to be under interrogation
from the time they were picked up by the police just after 11.30am.
'The lawyers told
us they were chased away by the police and that they were making
frantic efforts to engage more senior practitioners to handle the
case,' said Sonyowa.
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