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Woza Moya – Shona edition – May 2007

Kutaura nenyaya yenhaurirano – mawonero eWOZA nenzira – gumi dzekupinda muZimbabwe itsva

WOZA yaiverenga nekunzwa nezvenhaurirano inodawo kutaura mafungiro ayo.

Chekutanga, tinoda kuziva kuti chinangwa chemutungamiri weSouth Africa Thabo Mbeki, newe Tanzania Kikwete nehama dzedu dzeSADC vanoda kuburitsa chii panhaurirano iyi. Kuvapo kwavo kunounza hurumende itsva here pasina zvemetongerwo enyika, upfumi nekugara kwakanaka kana kuti chinangwa chavo chinoreva zvimwe zvinopfuura izvi kana kuti tivati vayananisi vechokwadi. Hurumende iripo inofanira kurega hurongwa uhu huchienderera mberi pasina kuviringidzwa uye kuti ibve pachigaro kutendera hurumende itsva. Ticharamba tichivakurudzira kuti vaite izvi kuti tiwane mukana wekupinda muZimbabwe itsva, vanhu veZimbabwe vachagara vachifara vakaenzana uye vane rukudzo.

Chinangwa chedu ndechei sevanhu veZimbabwe vakatakura mitoro inorema tichikundikana kurarama?

Chinangwa chedu chingatsanangudzwa nenzira iyi. Tinoziva pane moto uye kuti pane poto irikufashaira iripo. Hatina kubvunzwa chekubika neachadya chikafu chacho kana chaibva. Takamirira kudaidzwa kuti tigowane chikafu, tiri mubishi kutsvaga huni nekudziunza pamoto kuitira kuti avo vari kubika vaone kukuchidzira moto, kuitira kuti kana watanga kubvira dzinenge dziri huni dzedu dzaita kuti ubvire zvakare kuitira kuti poto irambe ichifashaira. Kana chikafu chapera kubikwa tichakumbira nzvimbo patafura kuti tigowane chikafu chabikwa nehuni dzedu. Kana chikafu chakabikwa zvakaipa, ticharamba kudya, tokumbira nzira imwe iri nani yokubika tovayeuchidza kuti vanamai ndivo vanogona kubika chikafu chinogara chichirangarirwa!

Tinogona kuenderera mberi tichiti, avo vari kuyananisa munhaurirano nevematongerwo enyika vari mazviri, vanofanira kunge vachifunga zvakashandiswa pakubika chikafu kuti chive chakanaka nekufarirwa nevanhu vese vemuZimbabwe:

1. Mhirizhonga munzira dzose inofanira kumira kutendera nhaurirano kuti pamwe ingapodza zviri kuitika.
2. Vose vane chekuita mumusangano uyu vanofanira kubvunzwa nevamwewo vachipawo pfungwa dzavo vakaita sevanotevera: vose vematongerwo enyika, mapoka anozvimirira, machechi, vashandi, vemabhizinisi, vechidiki nemadzimai, vose vachiwana zvakayenzana. Chinangwa chiri chekuti panoitwa nhaurirano paiswe vanofanomirira kuchigadziriswa bumbiro. Vamiriri ava vanofanira kutambira zvinotevera:
3. Kutora masimba ezvemitemo toenda kune vasinga kwanisi kutaura zvavanofunga uye kuita misangano yakaita sePOSA nemukana yekuva neruzivo nekuchengetedza zvakavanzika (AIPPA). Tinoti ngazvipere zvekusarudza mitemo.
4. Kuita wongororo yevashandi vehurumende, magweta, nevezvemitemo nezveruzivo rwavo nevasinei nezvematongerwo enyika. Vanobatikana vanofanira kuendeswa kunodzidziswa kana kunobvunzuridzwa, vanoona nezvekuchengetedzwa kwemitemo, mapurisa nevechidiki vanofanira kubviswa voendeswa kunzvimbo yavanofanira kunge vari.
5. Totangisa kudzorera venharaunda dzekunze kwenyika netarisiro yekudzosera upfumi kuita kuti mabasa awande.
6. Kuita wongororo yeivhu kuti kugadzwe zvino zvisingazobviswe kuitira kupedza dambudziko rekushaikwa kwechikafu.
7. Kugadzirisa kunyorwa kwebumbiro kusanganisira hurumende yenguvarefu tichibvunza vanhu vese veZimbabwe vari muno nevari kunze.
8. Kwava kutora zvabuda pabumbiro remutemo nehurumende yenguvarefu toisa mumagwaro anotungamirwa uyezve akawongororwa neSADC.
9. Kugadzira sarudzo kusanganisira kumahofisi evanopa zvitupa, kugadzira mutemo mutsva wekuvhota, kusarudza akazvimirira kukomiti yesarudzo kuti igadzirire bhuku rine vanhu vanovhota nekugadzirira kunovhota. Tinenge tava kuti kuna Tobaiwa Mudede nehuori hwake zvatibva.
10. Toona kuti sarudzo dzaitwa zviri pamutemo weSADC nyika dzemhiri kwemakungwa nedzakatikomberedza nevatarisi vemuno. Vamiriri ndivo vanozotaura vanenge vakunda pasarudzo.

“Ngatisanamatire kuti ndidzivirirwe pangozi asi ndinamatire kuti ndive nechivindi chekutarisana nengozi. Ngandisa kumbire kuti ndinzwe kurwadziwa asi ndikumbire moyo wokuti ndikunde kurwadziwa.” Rabindranath Tagore

Nzira Dzokuratidzira Murunyararo
* Hatizombofi takakuwadza munhu uyezve hatimbofi takadzosera mhirizhonga.
* Tichava nekuvimbika tichabata munhu wese zvakanaka zvikuru seyi ezvemutemo.
* Tichabudisa pachena mawonero edu uye hatizombochengeti zvigumbu.
* Tichacherechedza munhu wese nekupa rubatsiro
* Sevachengeti verunyararo tichacherechedza vamwe mumhirizhonga iyi.
* Panguva yekuratidzira hatizombofi takamhanya kana kuyita mayitiro akashata achavundutsa vanhu.
* Kana tikawana varatidziri vachivundutsira vamwe tichapindira toyita runyararo. Kana varatidziri vakaita mirizhonga tinoregera kuyendamberi.
* Hatibe kana kuparadza midziyo yevanhu.
* Hatitombofi takatakurazvombo.
ü Hatizombofi takatakura zvinodaka kanamishonga kunze kwemishonga yekurapa vanonga vakwara.
* Tichachengetedza mitemo yedu nevamwe varatidziri kana pakavanekusa bvumirana tichaparadzana.
* Tichabvumirana kuti tisave nemhirizhonga, hatimbofi takanyepa.

Kana muchibvumirana nenzira dzekuyita murunyararo uyezve muchida kubatana neWOZA tumirayi matsamba enyu pa P. O. Box FM 701 Famona Bulawayo. Utiwudze kuti uriani uyezve chii Chirikuita kuti ubatane neWOZA. Nyorayi nerurimi rwamunonzwisisa. Motitumira kero yenyu nechitamba kuyitira kuti tikutumidzireyi (Sisterhood Promise) mukango bvuma mashandiro edu tichakutumidzirai kadi rinoratidza kuti mava mumwe wedu.

Williams and Mahlangu spend third night in custody

Two WOZA members, arrested on Wednesday, are spending a third night in custody. They are expected to appear in court tomorrow morning at 9am. It is believed that they are also being charged under Section 46 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) as read with Section 2(v) of the schedule to the Criminal Code – ‘interfering with the ordinary comfort, convenience, peace or quiet of the public or creating a nuisance or obstruction’, the same as the other activists.

They were allowed food at dinnertime with no interference and the members who took in the food report that they are in good spirits. WOZA activists will maintain a vigil outside Bulawayo Central Police Station through the night to ensure that they come to no harm however.

The five members who were released today at lunchtime received medical treatment for their injuries, mostly soft tissue bruising. One member related how she was beaten with baton sticks by several police officers, including across the breasts. She is in severe pain and doctors are worried that some of the lesions may form into abscesses. Another member, who was not arrested, needed to receive specialist treatment this afternoon and will need to have an operation tomorrow. She was kicked in the groin by booted police officers on Wednesday and is bleeding heavily.

With the release of the women, we have been able to learn much more about conditions in the cells. The women related how officers threw bucket loads of water into the cells every day, forcing them to spend the entire time on wet concrete. In the middle of a cold Bulawayo winter, the group of seven was also only given two blankets in total. As a result, many of the women are suffering from cold symptoms.

The group of seven was also kept in a cell by themselves, away from the other women prisoners. It is suspected that this was to prevent the WOZA activists from teaching their fellow detainees about their rights and recruiting them to join the nonviolent struggle for social justice in Zimbabwe! It is believed that Williams and Mahlangu are currently being held in a cell with other women however.

News update
Friday 8th June – 2.30pm

There is still extreme concern for the well being of Jenni Williams and Magodonga Mahlangu. They are still being detained without charge and police are planning to apply for a warrant of further detention. Lawyers are being told that they will be taken to court tomorrow.

However as Law and Order officers have directly threatened these two, telling them that they will be taken to Harare and detained and tortured, WOZA does not believe that their safety can be maintained during those 24 hours. We also believe that it is just a tactic to keep them in custody until Monday

The other five members were released at lunchtime. They were taken to court but did not appear before the magistrate. Police were instructed to proceed by way of summons.

News update
Friday 8th June – 10.30am

URGENT APPEAL – CONCERN FOR MAHLANGU AND WILLIAMS

Five of the seven WOZA members being held at Bulawayo Central Police Station have finally been charged. These members had been arrested at the demonstration and have been charged under Section 46 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) as read with Section 2(v) of the schedule to the Criminal Code – ‘employs any means whatsoever which are likely materially to interfere with the ordinary comfort, convenience, peace or quiet of the public or any section of the public, or does any act which is likely to create a nuisance or obstruction’. They are currently being taken to court.

Jenni Williams and Magodonga Mahlangu, who handed themselves in to the police station in solidarity, have not yet been fingerprinted or had their statements taken. Police are refusing to allow the lawyers access to them. It is also not clear what these two will be charged with. There is concern that police may try to detain these two further or take this opportunity to carry out their death threats on the two WOZA activists. Lawyers are making an urgent high court application for their release.

Please keep calling Bulawayo Central Police Station on +263 9 72515 / 61706 to demand that Williams and Mahlangu be released immediately and not be harmed.

101 arrested members relased by 6pm Wednesday 27June2011

The Police Commissioner must investigate Bulawayo Police Officers for overzealousness
ONE HUNDRED and one members of Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) arrested between 10:30 and 11:30 am on 27 June Wednesday 2012 were release in batches of 5 from 4:30pm yesterday. The police adopted this release strategy to prevent a further protest being conducted if they released everyone at once. Magodonga Mahlangu was the last to be released at 5:30pm.

During the 6 hours in detention, the 101 activists had to fight for every right to be observed by singing protest songs bringing work in the police station to a stand still for most of the day. When arresting details tried to separate and interrogate some of them hoping to release others and remain with a token amount to formally charge. They refused singing a protest song. They sang to demand their lawyer Kossam Ncube get access after he was denied access 3 times.

The police refused to allow the lawyer to oversee the release but agreed that the feeding team stand at his office which is opposite and give food to those being dispersed. This went on smoothly for the first 30 minutes with Riot police officers watching. Then orders were given by another commanding officer for the snatching of the food from the feeding team which included Jennifer Williams. Two officers one plain clothed arrived and snatched two boxes with drinks in and left refusing to explain to the activists. Meanwhile the police officer coordinating the release process was surprised and accompanied by Magodonga Mahlangu went in search of the stolen loot.  Confusion prevailed as to who had ordered the looting and Mahlangu refused to accept the food. To cover up the mess, Orders were given to deploy 100 (this figure is not an exaggeration) Riot police to go and arrest Jennifer Williams and the other members of the feeding team.

When Magodonga Mahlangu was released she was followed by plain clothed police officers expecting her to lead them to Jennifer Williams. The two spent the next 3 hours evading unnecessary arrest.

WOZA wish to highlight that even though no charges were made and the activist released without being beaten, their right to peaceful process protected under the current shambolic constitution were effectively denied. To WOZA members this is crime is unforgivable. Additionally the different responses between Riot police in Harare and Bulawayo is cause for concern. We call upon the Police Commissioner to investigate the police command in Bulawayo and discipline them for breaking the law covering the dispersal of peaceful protest.

Police disrupted the protests that were due to start at 11am Wednesday 27 June 2012 by arresting 40 members and by-standers from 10:20am. Magodonga Mahlangu and 2 others were arrested at the statue and 57 members marched with them to the police station bringing the number arrested to 101. With three of each being male, breastfeeding mothers and minors. Two additional protests marched from the statue to the police station to hand themselves in but were turned away by Riot police.

The protest were organised to push for the release of a draft Constitution in a Bulawayo sit-in protest. WOZA are using this occupation style of protest to demand their full right to peaceful protest, freedom of assembly and expression.

Members were singing a popular song sung in the early 1980s. It is sung in isiNdebele language – ‘ilitshe likaNkomo limbomboziwe, liyovulwa ngubani, limbomboziwe? (Loosely translated it means Nkomos ‘stone’ denoting a plan has been hidden or turned upside down, who is going to put it right?)

The choice of location is to expose the disrespect to late Joshua Nkomo, called ‘Father Zimbabwe’. He came from a crop of genuine nationalist and he remains unrecognised. The block of cement ‘statue’ and airport named after him and a brand new unopened hospital are caught up in centralised power struggles – not one of them finished. Devolution in the new constitution would mean we can recognise our own heroes in our own way as the sit-in attempts to do. WOZA also wanted to focus on him. He was the kind of unique politician who could develop clear ideology with people at heart. The current batch of politicians seem empty minded and recycle Zanu PF political cultures. In the end Nkomo put peoples’ welfare before his political ambition and surrendered his party ZAPU to Zanu violence. A mistake that can never be repeated again as people must decide their own destiny and refuse to be silenced by violence.

My experience in police custody by ‘CD’

We were arrested at Kuwadzana ZESA and we were taken across to the police station. We were told to sit in the sun for 3-4 hours. We were then taken to Harare Central Law and Order. There we were beaten every 10 minutes. They wanted us to tell them who initiated the demo and why were flyers written ‘Power to the People by March 2005’ and who filled the protest notes written the amounts of electricity bills last month. They sometimes denied us food and sanitary pads they shared. They ordered us to remove braas, jerseys and shoes then we were detained in dirty cells. We had to use dirty toilets without shoes – there wasn’t any water so we were treated very badly.

In the next morning we were again beaten. The policeman who beat us was called Chari. There were about 12 of them. They beat us , they kicked us and walked on us whilst wearing shoes. They never wanted us to talk to each other. They wanted to know who was bringing the food. They wanted to know who was sponsoring WOZA and what we were promised after the demo. We were only given lunch at 5:30 pm. We paid fines for the fear of being tortured as we were promised that if we do not pay fines they were going to deal with us in the night.

An open letter to political parties and civic leaders from WOZA

To:

  • First Secretary and Chairman, Zanu PF – R. G. Mugabe and John Nkomo; and
  • Presidents/Chairmen of all other political parties:

Movement of Democratic Change (MDC) Presidents Tsvangirai and Mutambara, PF ZAPU, ZAPU 2000, Zanu Ndonga, UPM, UPP, PUMA, DP, Zimbabwe Peoples Democratic Party, Zimbabwe Youth in Alliance; and

  • Leaders of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and Civic Movements.

Your Excellency, Honorable Members of Parliament, Senators, Chiefs, Mayors, Councilors, Comrades and Friends,As we write this open letter, Zimbabweans are living in a state of fear and uncertainty. They suffer discrimination in all its forms and are unable to earn a living. Levels of poverty are high; unemployment is at 82% and inflation at four figures. Non-existent service delivery also makes life difficult. Access to education, housing and other basic needs is now only for the rich. The HIV/AIDS pandemic, which has created thousands of orphans and child-headed households, is a social catastrophe compounded by a failed healthcare system and little or no access to ARVs. Further loss of valuable human resources is happening due to people leaving the country in large numbers. People have been unsuccessful at holding their government accountable due to a raft of repressive laws and shrinking freedom of expression/media space. Corruption at all levels of government and the politicisation of all aspects of society has led to chaos and disorganization in every sector.

Women and men of WOZA have initiated a non-violent campaign with the aim of mobilising Zimbabweans to demand social justice from their leaders. The time has come to put the past behind us and start building a better tomorrow. We plan to hold existing leaders accountable and mobilise people to demand leaders who will deliver all aspects of social justice and a genuinely people-driven constitution.

This resolution was made after an eleven-month, nationwide consultation process. During 2006, over 284 meetings, consulting almost 10,000 rural and urban people on social justice were conducted. The people spoke clearly about what they want in a new Zimbabwe and their contributions are contained in the People’s Charter attached below.

Please open up your heart and read it sincerely knowing that it contains the dreams and desires of a heartbroken nation. We are looking to ALL leaders to provide a public reply and endorsement of the People’s Charter and would be happy to have this by Valentine’s Day on 14th February 2007.

WOZA looks forward to working hand in hand with any political or civic leaders who have publicly endorsed the People’s Charter to deliver social justice and honour the wishes of the Zimbabwean people.

Thirteen arrested on WOZA tenth anniversary

WOZA leader Jenni Williams was arrested this afternoon in front of the JOMIC offices in Bulawayo while commemorating the 10th anniversary of WOZA.

WOZA had arranged a meeting with JOMIC in order to request them to act urgently according to their mandate to ensure the implementation of the GPA. Several complaints of abuse of rights by the ZRP had been made by WOZA to JOMIC, but the abuse had not stopped. The WOZA leaders, Williams and Mahlangu met with JOMIC to raise this issue and to present to them letters to be transmitted to the GPA principals to draw their attention to the same complaints.

Meanwhile WOZA members demonstrated outside the building where the meeting took place, in support of the leadership and in commemoration of ten years of WOZA’s activities in defending human rights and promoting social justice. As Williams and Mahlangu emerged from the meeting, Williams was arrested by riot police who were assaulting demonstrators as well as members of the public. All of this action took place in front of the disbelieving members of the JOMIC delegation, who had asked during the meeting to be provided with concrete proof of the activities of the police.

Along with Williams, seven other WOZA women and five bystanders were also arrested; one of the bystanders is a pregnant woman and another is a female minor. All are currently at Bulawayo Central Police Station. A lawyer representing them has been allowed access and was told by Chief Inspector Mandere that the police were in a meeting trying to decide what charges to lay.

According to a ruling by the Supreme Court handed down in 2010, they can not be charged under section 37(1)(a)(i) of the Criminal Law(Codification and Reform) Act as long as the demonstration was peaceful and did not cause a threat or danger to the public. The Supreme Court at that time declared that the constitution protects the right of the public to freedom of expression and assembly and yet the police have clearly defied the order of the highest court in the land and violated these rights today when they broke up a peaceful demonstration and assaulted and arrested some of the participants. It was this very type of violation that was the source of the complaint to JOMIC and to the GPA principals.

We believe that JOMIC now has their evidence and expect them to take urgent action to correct the situation. The ZRP needs to be instructed in no uncertain terms by all the principals to desist from breaking the law as interpreted by the Supreme Court. And we do not expect that any prosecutor can take forward any charge that might be devised.

Court drama and incarceration of Williams

Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) Leaders Jennifer Williams and Magodonga Mahlangu appeared before Magistrate Godwin Sengweni on Monday 12 March 2012. Their appearance was for continuation of Trial. A review process had been submitted to the High Court and is scheduled to be heard on 19 March 2012 before Judge Cheda Senior.

Advocate Perpetua Dube appearing with Godfrey Nyoni made submissions producing evidence of the set down date. They also presented a Doctors certificate in respect to the health of first accused Jennifer Williams and proof of the purchase of medication causing drowsiness. The Defence requested a postponement until the High Court application has been finalised. Prosecutor Goodluck Katenaire vehemently opposed the application insisting Williams was faking illness to stall the proceedings and that she should take the defence stand.  He went onto to complain that ‘these are the people who say justice delayed is justice denied’.  He made accusations that the Doctors certificate and prescription were fake.

Advocate Dube attempted to argue the matter further with a quote; ‘Justice must not only be done but must be seen to be done’. But with those wise words and a 45minute adjournment Magistrate Sengweni returned to deliver a shocking ruling. He narrated how Williams could not walk unaided and had to be helped in and out of the dock, that she was obviously unable to pay attention to proceedings. He then referred to the court as a ‘human court’ and ordered that she be sent to prison ‘to save her life and dignity’ and be seen by a prison doctor.  He then remanded both accused persons to reappear before him on 15 March.

Scores of WOZA members attending the court in solidarity verbalised their shock. The court had to adjourn so as to clear the courtroom. A further delay was caused by the search for female prison guards to help Williams out of the dock and down the 4 flight of stairs into the prison holding cells. Riot Police were also summoned to remove the upset WOZA members from the pavement surrounding the Court.

This ‘security threat’ apparently caused by peaceful human rights defenders resulted in the prison guards removing Williams off the court property to the downtown prison complex until she could be transported the 30 kilometres to Mlondolozi prison complex.

Meanwhile noting that Williams did not have her handbag with medication, Mahlangu spent 3 hours trying to locate Williams. Prison officers refused to divulge her whereabouts thereby withholding her access to medication till late the following afternoon.

Fortunately the High Court ruled that the trial proceedings must be stopped; Williams original bail conditions restored and that rescued the situation. Williams won her freedom after 2 days and one night in Mlondolozi prison, most of that time without her medication or food and sleeping on dirty prison blankets in an overcrowded cell with 16 other inmates. Despite the nightmare experience WOZA reports that resilient Williams is recovering at home. She was able with the help of Magodonga Mahlangu to walk into the dock in court today 15 March and was remanded to 22nd March 2012.

The High Court matter is in open court on 19 March 2012 and will deal with the review of the refusal by Magistrate Godwin Sengweni to discharge the activists for the kidnap and theft charge at the close of the state case.
for background visit http://wozazimbabwe.org/?p=1158

Arrests:2 members missing; 7 denied breakfast

Arrests but 2 women cannot be located at any police station, 7 denied breakfast

NINE Bulawayo members were arrested the night of 2nd July 2012 and are being held in custody at 3 different police stations. They were arrested in 2 separate incidents. This is part of the occupy and demand the draft constitution campaign that WOZA have been conducting since May 2012.

The seven who are women arrested at 10pm spent the night at Western Commonage police station but this morning they were loaded up into a police van at 9am.  It seems the police officers have taken them to where the messages have been painted in the road and are taking photographs.  They are Vigilant Lunga, Violet Dube, Theresa Phiri, Catherine Dhliwayo, Eunice Moyo, Mpikelelo Moyo and Sibongile Lumbile.  They were denied food this morning so have not eaten since last evening.

Some of the painted messages read: Fire Chihuri (the partisan police commissioner); devolution for development; we want separation of powers and we want education.

The two members arrested in Matshobana at 7pm are Miriam Ngcebetsha and Ottilia Dube. Their whereabouts are not known and the support team is going door to door at every police station looking for them.