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Police bar Family Fun Day
September 04, 2007

Police on 1 September 2007 barred a Family Fun Day organised in Bulawayo by Radio Dialogue saying the meeting had not been sanctioned in terms of the repressive Public Order and Security Act (POSA).

The meeting had been scheduled for White City Stadium only to be disrupted by the police who ordered an estimated 300 people who had already gathered at the venue to disperse.

Radio Dialogue is community radio station aspiring to broadcast to the community of Bulawayo and its surrounding areas as provided for in terms of the Broadcasting Services Act.

In a statement Radio Dialogue condemned the police action as unwarranted as they had been given verbal clearance three days in advance as evidenced by the presence of police officers from Mabutweni police station who were on duty at the stadium prior to the abrupt cancellation of the family fun day activities.

The station's crew was busy setting its equipment at the venue when two police officers and a chief inspector sought clarification on whether the event had been cleared. They then took Radio Dialogue administrator Kudzai Kwangwari to their headquarters at Southampton House where he was told by their superiors that the event had been banned.

Kwangwari was then taken to the Provincial Police Headquarters at Ross Camp where he was informed of the 'new criteria' pertaining to police clearance for public events which required that clearance should first be sought from their headquarters. Previously Radio Dialogue would get verbal clearances at district and local police stations for its public events.

The police returned to the venue one and half hours later and announced that the planned activities could not proceed as planned leading to the dispersal of the crowd that had gathered for the event.

For more information contact Kudzai Kwangwari, on (09) 884858 or Cell: 011618873

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