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Statement on the confiscation of radios by the police
Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition
February 22, 2013

Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition notes with serious concern recent revelations by the media that the Zimbabwe Republic Police are confiscating communicating devices such as solar and kinetic energy propelled radio gadgets from communities.

It would appear he police are infringing on the rights of citizens, without clarifying he legal basis of such restrictions and confiscations, in view of citizens' right to access information especially ahead of crucial constitutional referendum and harmonized elections.

Section 20 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe guarantees citizens the right to receive information as well as sharing it.

Section 38B of the Broadcasting Services Act states that one is not prohibited from possession of a receiver as long as it is in accordance with the terms and conditions of a listener's licence as issued by ZBC.

The right to information is also enshrined in Article 9 of the African Charter on Human and People's Rights which Zimbabwe is party to.

Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition challenges the police to clarify how then it is illegal to own a radio as this is important in proving that the police are not themselves acting outside the law.

It is suspicious that he confiscation of radios comes amid a crackdown on Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and smacks of further suspicion that the police might be finding crooked ways of hindering CSOs from accessing communities who are in need of information and other essentials.

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