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Letter of concern in respect of the arrest and ultimate release of PTUZ leaders
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
February 16, 2007

Attention: Detective Chief Inspector Mr. Mavunda
The Officer In Charge Law and Order Section
Harare Central Police Station


We seek to raise concerns in respect of the arrest and ultimate release of the above named individuals whom Messrs Andrew Makoni and Otto Saki have been representing since their arrest on the 14th of February 2007 at Haig Primary School, detention at Malbereign Police Station, and their subsequent handing over to your offices and Detective Constable Muyashu being named as the investigating officer. On the 15th of February 2007, our clients were not taken to court for initial appearance and a decision reached that the same would happen the following day (16th of February 2007). At around 1820hours we received information that our clients were being released and shockingly,

  • neither yourself as the officer in charge, nor the investigating officer privy to the names and contacts of the duly instructed lawyers made a singular effort to inform us about their release,
  • when reasons for their releases were sought, you indicated that witnesses were no longer forthcoming and prepared to testify, despite the known legal position to you that witnesses are not required on the initial remand proceedings,
  • Within your office corridors were several unidentified man, who accosted oour clients as we walked out and latter followed our clients to their respective homes and one of the individuals is known to our clients and can be positively identified.

Whilst we appreciated your desire to see justice done in the matter and not deny our clients their liberty, we are concerned at the hurried nature of their release moreso without such information beign conveyed officially by your offices to their lawyers; that the unidentified men we belive are known to your offces accosted our clients with unknown intentions and motives. Founded on these events, we are extremely concerned at our clients' saftely and security and urge your offices to undertake and guarantee such. And in the unfortunate event that something happens to them, we would not hesitate to take legal action against yourselves and hope that this will not be necessary.

Yours faithfully
Otto Saki

Ag Programmes Coordinator
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights

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