A Chivhu Central Police Station CID department Assistant Inspector summoned the ALAC team to his office as they were setting up their equipment for use at the roadshow. He demanded a police clearance from our organiser, which had already been approved by the Officer-in- Charge of the Chivhu ZRP Central Police. Nevertheless, the Assistant Inspector went on to explain the operations of state security departments in the town, highlighting that civic organisations need to get approval from all state security departments before they can proceed with any events. The identities of these ‘departments’ were war veterans, CIO and other irrelevant bodies for the subject in question.
He threatened the ALAC team by affirming that the staff already risk being arrested and charged even for distributing fliers without added security clearance. This is preposterous.
The police later gave the TI-Z officers the permission to resume the event.
A total of 9 state security agents patrolled the event. These included 6 CID officers and 3 ZRP officers. The 9 officers paid greater attention to the discussions and presentations taking place on the stage ensuring that the presenters do not discuss ‘political’ issues. Surprisingly, the roadshow was interrupted for the second time by 3 security personnel from the President’s office 45 minutes later. They also demanded to meet the organisers of the event and the state security personnel who had sanctioned the event. In a meeting on the sides of the roadshow, CIO officers expressed their disgruntlement to ZRP and CID for granting TI-Z permission to conduct a roadshow. They subsequently ordered the ALAC team to abort the event and leave Chivhu immediately because they had not been accepted by CIO office and other people said to be ‘in high office’.
Civic space continues to narrow as the nation braces for an election. This is unfortunate as it stifles debate on national issues.TI-Z condemns this censorship, abuse and attack on civil liberties. TI-Z remains resolute in creating public demand for transparency and accountability with authorities because it is only through the involvement and demand from people that the cancer of corruption will be removed in Zimbabwe.
It is time to erupt over corruption!Post published in: Politics