Three members hospitalised following beatings in police custody

Three of the 56 members arrested in Harare on Monday have been hospitalised following the beatings they received in custody by Law and Order officers in Harare Central Police Station. Almost all of the 56 required medical treatment. The baby received medical attention but was not hospitalised. It also appears that some injuries were received when one of officers involved walked all over the members as they were lying face down on the floor.

By 7pm on Tuesday, all 56 members arrested on Monday at the Kuwadzana ZESA sit-in had been assualted in police custody and forced to pay admission of guilt fines to ‘buy’ their freedom. Lawyers served police with orders to allow them access to their clients. This order was mostly ignored as the beatings continued. Reports indicate that they were made to lie down on the floor in the Law and Order department of Harare Central Police Station and were beaten by 12 officers. The names that members noted are Chari, Juta, Baya, Phiri and Mufademba. Reports indicate that one woman had a baby on her back whilst she lay down on the floor and the baby sustained beatings and has a swollen leg. As members reported for medical attention today, some could need hospitilisation, including the baby.

WOZA pay tribute to the courage of the human rights defenders who went to ZESA offices to press for their right to power knowing that these offices were next door to police stations. If more Zimbabweans followed this example of courage to fight for rights, Zimbabwe would be free tomorrow.