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Ward 34 Co-ordinator beaten, tortured and shaved by police
Residents Association (CHRA)
April 03, 2007
Raymond Bake, CHRA Ward
34 Coordinator: He appeared in court charged with allegedly bombing
Marimba Police Station and throwing a petrol bomb into a passenger
train travelling to Bulawayo. The police failed to substantiate
their allegations an only linked bake to the said crime by alleging
that a piece of cloth that was found on the scene was of an identical
colour to the one found at his house. In his submissions on behalf
of Bake, lawyer Alec Muchadehama narrated Bake's experience
at the hands of the police who arrested him.
They forcibly ordered him to lie prostate on the rail line, insisting
that they wanted him run over by the train when it passes. They
later beat him up using booted feet, baton sticks until he reached
the Harare Central Police Station, where officers in the Law and
Order Section took turns to assault him. He was subsequently taken
to Matapi Police Station where the beatings and harassment continued
unabated. The Supreme Court has ruled that Matapi Police Station
holding cells are unfit for detentions.
While they assaulted,
they tied his dreadlocks on police vehicle rails. They started pulling
him and the dreadlocks plucked out, inflicting damage to his scalp.
Of pain to note is that Bake was denied both medical attention and
food while in police detention.
The lawyer explained
how the police subjected Bake to extreme torture to extract five
different statements, implicating several people who have nothing
to do with the bombings. The police simply wanted him to give them
names of people he associated with within the MDC structures. In
the end he gave them many names and the police have indicated they
are hunting those people. Bake now fears for his life and his friends
in the struggle for an independent Zimbabwe.
When he appeared before
a Harare magistrate, Bake had his locks shaved and appeared to be
in extreme pain.
He was denied
bail and was remanded in custody until 16 April 2007. However, the
defence counsel expressed disappointment in the court procedures
saying it appeared they will never win their arguments where the
State was insisting on detentions.
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