Violence: Cops deny involvement

The police have rejected allegations that they were complicit in political violence and selective application of the law.

Chief Superintended Oliver Mandipaka said: "There is no way we can be said to be advocating or sponsoring violence. But what we would love, even if you look at our theme, the theme that we have for 2012, which is our guiding principle, is, we are talking about peace and stability.

"Those accusations angori ma accusations but I don’t think that’s the kind of police force we would need in the country. We definitely need peace like all other citizens. And we continuously implore our people to live peacefully. We exist because we are guided by the constitution. Our duty is make sure that we maintain law and order and we basically do that and that is what we do."

Mandipaka was reacting to a statement by Minister of Finance Tendai Biti that the state, through the ZRP, was complicit in Zanu (PF)’s terror campaign against the MDC. Biti slammed what he said was selective application of the law by the police.

"We are concerned by the role of the State, the uneven and unequal application of the law," Biti said. "Right now, the chairperson of our Youth Assembly Solomon Madzore is in Chikurubi Prison. Seven other activists are at Harare Remand Prison, including the Maengahama brothers.

"They have been brought for remand countless times but justice has not been done. There have been so many incidents of violence against the MDC, but not a single prosecution. But when it comes to the MDC, another set of standards is applied. In fact, as has been shown by the happenings in Mbare, the minute we go to report we get arrested. So we say no to state-sponsored violence. We say no to police-sponsored violence," said Biti.

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