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Hwange brutality: Woman battles for life as police bar lawyers from accessing client
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
October 11
, 2013

Human rights lawyers have intervened to seek justice for some women who were brutalised by armed officer of the Zimbabwe Republic Police for protesting against State-owned coal miner Hwange Colliery Company’s failure to pay their husbands’ salaries for several months.

Four of the women were badly injured and are in hospital, where one of them is battling for her life in the intensive care unit. Images of the badly assaulted and bloodied women, who were battered with truncheons shocked the world, leading human rights defenders to demand action to end police brutality.

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) moved in to assist the women when the demonstration broke out on Monday 7 October 2013 and secured the release of two women who had been detained at Hwange Police Station. The two were released on summons after the intervention of ZLHR member Thulani Nkala of Dube and Company.

Nkala has already drafted a letter of complaint and notice of intention to sue the police over the brutal attack on the peaceful protestors.

The women took the drastic action to protest after their husbands went for several months without receiving their salaries from the once giant coal miner.

Meanwhile, human rights lawyer Denford Halimani, a member of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights was on Friday 11 October 2013 still to be granted access to his client, James Chidhakwa, an Information Technology officer and the secretary for security and defence in the MDC-T party’s Youth Assembly, who is detained at Harare Central Police Station. Chidhakwa was taken from his work offices in Harare on Friday morning for some yet to be disclosed reasons. Halimani has for more than four hours been battling to be allowed access to his client.

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