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Artists arrested over Final Push play
October 03, 2007

Freelance cameraperson James Jemwa, actors Sylvanos Mudzvova and Anthony Tongani were arrested in Harare during the performance of the satirical play, Final Push, which depicts the country's seven-year socio-economic political crisis.

According to Daniel Maphosa, the play's technical director and producer, the three were arrested in Harare Gardens' Theatre in the Park by plainclothes police officers who were part of the audience that had gathered to watch the play. Mudzvova and Tongani were arrested backstage and bundled into a police truck.

Jemwa who was filming the play was arrested when he went backstage to investigate what was going on. "The arrests are a travesty of justice and an affront to freedom of expression. Our space for public debate and free expression is shrinking daily," said Maphosa.

MISA-Zimbabwe could not immediately ascertain the nature of the charges against the three and whether they were still in custody but that lawyers from the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights were on the case. The ZLHR lawyer who is representing the three could not be immediately contacted for comment.

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