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Police teargas 30 MDC supporters in Masvingo
Zimbabwe Peace Project
March 16
, 2005

In an act of high-handedness, police this morning tear gassed at least 30 MDC supporters putting up their party's campaign posters in the Rujeko residential area, injuring several people, it is alleged.

The supporters, it is said, were erecting MDC posters and distributing flyers in small groups in the Sisk and Rujeko areas when the police pounced on them.

In an interview, one of the supporters, MB (30) who escaped unscathed said her unsuspecting group was being tailed by some police details in Sisk who demanded to see a letter confirming they had official police permission to carry out their activities.

She said a green coloured police Land Rover immediately arrived at the scene, and a police officer only identified as Ndlovu from Chikato Police Station who was allegedly at the helm of the act, instructed the supporters to sit in an open area before giving the nod to fire teargas canisters in the midst of the group, which comprised mostly women.

In the ensuing stampede, some women were injured while trying to escape.

Under the Public Order and Security Act, illegal political activities do not include erecting posters or distributing political material during campaigns.

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