Additional arrest in Mutare

Additional arrest in Mutare; NCA members to be detained until Monday.
15 November 2008, 9:30 a.m.

This morning a National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) officer was arrested at his home in Mutare.  His arrest brings the total number of NCA members in police custody in Mutare to ten, after a court magistrate ordered that the nine detainees being held at Mutare Central Police Station be transferred to Mutare Remand Prison to await a Mond

In the early hours of this morning, police officers went to the home of Manex Mauya, NCA Youth Chairperson for Manicaland.  Mauya was arrested and taken to Mutare Central Police Station.  Although the police have not provided an explanation for the arrest, NCA regional staff presume that he was seized because of his involvement in Tuesday’s peaceful protest in Mutare.  There has been no indication when Mauya will be brought to court or what charges he may face.

On Friday, a court magistrate ordered that the nine NCA members being held in Mutare Central Police Station be transferred to Mutare Remand Prison.  They will be held in this location until a court date scheduled for Monday.  This weekend represents the fifth and sixth days that these individuals will be held without being charged.

The magistrate ordered that one of the detainees, a pregnant woman who is reported to have suffered a miscarriage on Wednesday while in police custody, be taken to Mutare General Hospital to receive needed medical care.  Lawyers for the detained individuals will work with prison officials to ensure that the hospital visit occurs today.  However, NCA staff are concerned that three days have already passed since the woman experienced the medical trauma, and the hospital may not have the necessary doctors or medicines to deal with resulting complications.  

The continued presence of NCA members in Zimbabwe’s police stations and prisons is a profound injustice and cannot be justified by bringing baseless charges against these individuals.  Today’s arrest of an NCA officer underscores the government’s attempts to silence the organization through violence and arbitrary detentions.  However, the NCA remains committed to its campaign for democratic reform in Zimbabwe and will go ahead with all planned actions.   

NCA Information and Publicity Department

[email protected]

(04) 736 338

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