The fate of several Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) activists in Budiriro, who were arrested 10 days ago on allegations of holding an illegal meeting, will be decided this Friday during their bail hearing. The hearing, which was held over three consecutive days, concluded on Tuesday.
During the proceedings, CCC President Nelson Chamisa attended the hearing and stated that the arrests were politically motivated intimidation tactics by the ruling party, Zanu PF. He claims that the arrests were a desperate attempt to prevent his victory in the upcoming election, and said that the ruling party is afraid of his party.
The activists were arrested at the home of CCC legislator Costa Machingauta in Budiriro, where they were alleged to have held an “unsanctioned” meeting. The case was briefly delayed when the magistrate became ill.
“What is clear is that my brother Mr Mnagagwa is back to his old ways, his panicking, jittery, he knows that defeat is imminent,” Chamisa said.
He dismissed claims that the party was weak, and said that the ruling party was just scared of his party.
The bail ruling for the activists will be handed down this Friday. Meanwhile, CCC president Nelson Chamisa attended bail hearing proceedings on Tuesday.
Chamisa said the arrests were politically motivated and intimidation tactics by the ruling party, Zanu PF. “Honourable Sikhala has been in prison for over seven months now and now we have Honourable Chibaya and Machingauta and many leaders from Budiriro.”
“The ruling party’s attempts to silence the opposition and restrict freedom of speech are unacceptable and a violation of basic human rights. We call on the international community to pay attention to the situation in Zimbabwe and take action to protect the rights of all citizens,” Chamisa added.
This recent development has sparked concern among human rights groups and opposition parties, who are calling for an end to what they see as a crackdown on dissent.