Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Jestina Mukoko, Roy Bennet and the rest

Jestina Mukoko of the Zimbabwe Peace Project has now been incarcerated since December the 3rd 2008, and her condition is said to be life threatening, yet still the prison authorities will not bring her to open court or allow her to have private medical attention. A number of other MDC activists are also being held without bail.

To add to the impudence (is that the right word) of the ZANU PF clique, Roy Bennet, due to be sworn in as Deputy Minister of Agriculture, was arrested on Friday the 13th and whisked away to Mutare Police cells on spurious charges of ‘treason’, now reduced to ‘banditry’ and ‘sabotage’. Friday is the usual day for arrests like these to ensure the ‘guilty’ party remains in the police cells for the weekend. But to add insult to injury on Monday when Bennet is due to be remanded in the Mutare Magistrate’s Court, the Prosecutors (from Harare) fail to turn up. So Bennet is detained for a further 48 hours without warrant. It should be the prosecutors who should be charged with Contempt of Court and they should be the ones locked up in a police cell for 48 hours or more so they can find out what it is like to be treated, not like a common criminal, but worse than a common criminal.

But this is not all. A further 10 peaceful protestors were arrested on the 14th February in Bulawayo – seven women from WOZA and three men from Radio Dialogue. They too, were not brought to court on Monday.

It is almost unbelievable that these acts of ZANU PF treachery are taking place at the same time as the new Prime Minister is working his first day in office.

It has been suggested that Mugabe has lost control of his hard liners in the Army, the Police, the Prison Service and the CIO who are desperately trying to sabotage the new Government of National Unity. They know, one assumes, that not only are their jobs on the line, their lives are on the line for many of them have committed acts of inhumanity to their fellow man. It seems their current MO is to continue these acts in order to save themselves from The Hague.

What is really disturbing about all of this, and what has gone before, is that the South Africans – Mbeki and now Motlanthe, the majority of SADC and the AU think that Mugabe and his cronies should be in charge of the GNU. Have they no consciences either?

They have the power to sort this thuggery out. It is high time they used it.

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