THE NGO NETWORK ALLIANCE PROJECT - an online community for Zimbabwean activists  
 View archive by sector


Back to Index

Public Order and Security Amendment Bill, 2007 (H.B. 18, 2007)
Gazetted in Gazette Extraordinary on Friday 14th December, 2007

View the previous version of the Public Order and Security Act

Download this document
- Word 97 version (78KB)
- Acrobat PDF version (77KB
If you do not have the free Acrobat reader on your computer, download it from the Adobe website by clicking here.

Public Order and Security Amendment Bill, 2007


This Bill will amend the Public Order and Security Act [Chapter 11:17] (“the Act”) in clauses stipulated below.

Clause 1
This clause sets out the Bill’s short title.

Clause 2
This clause adds or amends various terms in the interpretation section of the Act.

Clause 3
Under the existing section 25 of the Act, organisers of public gatherings (other than gatherings specified in the Schedule to the Act) are required to give at least seven days’ written notice of their gatherings to a regulating authority - that is, to a senior police officer appointed as the regulating authority for the area concerned. The effect of this amendment to section 4 of the Act is to deem that notice to have been properly given if it is delivered to the most senior officer present in the police station closest in proximity to the place where the gathering is proposed to be held.

Clauses 4 and 5
Under the existing section 26 of the Act a regulating authority has power to prohibit a public gathering if the regulating authority for the area believes on reasonable grounds that the gathering is likely to occasion public disorder. Furthermore, under the existing section 27 of the Act a regulating authority has power to prohibit all public gatherings within any area for up to three months, where the regulating authority believes on reasonable grounds that the powers under sections 25 and 26 will not be sufficient to prevent public disorder being caused by public gatherings. Before prohibiting a gathering the regulating authority must, wherever practicable, give the organiser an opportunity to make representations to him or her, and an appeal against the prohibition lies to the Minister.
The amendments made by this clause will make mandatory the requirement on the part of a regulating authority to give notice to the organiser of an affected public gathering, where the regulating authority receives credible information on oath that disorder may ensue if the gathering proceeds. It will also require the regulating authority to enter into a dialogue with the organiser of gathering (called “the convener”), before issuing any prohibition order (other than an order contemplated by section 27). The purpose of the dialogue is to ensure that the gathering may take place safely, and only if this is not possible will the regulating authority be empowered to issue a prohibition order. An appeal against the prohibition order will no longer lie to the Minister of Home Affairs but to a magistrates court in terms of the new section 27B.

Clause 6
This clause insert two new sections in the Act.
The new section 27A prohibits gatherings in the vicinity of Parliament, a court or any protected place or area declared as such in terms of the Protected Areas and Places Act [Chapter 11:12] unless permission therefor is given by the Speaker, Chief Justice, Judge President or responsible authority of the protected place, as the case may be.

The new section 27B which provides for appeals to a magistrates court by any convener aggrieved by any direction or prohibition notice issued in terms of section 26, or any order temporarily prohibiting of holding of public demonstrations within particular police districts issued in terms of section 27.

Clause 7
This clause substitutes section 29 of the Act with a view to more fully specifying and strictly circumscribing the powers of the Police with respect to the dispersal of disorderly or potentially disorderly gatherings.

Clauses 8 and 9
These clauses make consequential and minor amendments to the Act.



To amend the Public Order and Security Act [Chapter 11:17]; and to provide for matters connected with or incidental to the foregoing.

ENACTED by the President and the Parliament of Zimbabwe.

1 Short title
This Act may be cited as the Public Order and Security Amendment Act, 2007.

Download full legislation

Please credit if you make use of material from this website. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.