Sky News Africa correspondent John Sparks set the record straight on a video his crew recorded of a police officer beating a handcuffed person along Chiremba road in Harare.
In an earlier press statement, police spokesperson Charity Cahramba denied that the incident caught on camera took place during the ongoing government crackdown on protestors. She said the video was actually done in 2016. In a statement announcing Makumire’s arrest, Charamba however said further clarification from the investigating team established that the video was actually shot on Saturday 26 January 2019.
Sparks said the Sky News team took the video on their way to Epworth to conduct an interview with the head of the National Vendors Union on 26 January 2019. He said they witnessed a man being beaten by members of the security forces and decided to film the incident. Said Sparks:
To confirm, the Sky News team was traveling to Epworth in Harare to conduct an interview with the head of the National Vendors Union on the morning of 26 January, 2019. At 8:30 am, at the junction of Chiremba Road and Glenara Avenue, we witnessed a man being beaten by members of the the security forces. We filmed as he was marched down the Chiremba Road in the direction of the CBD (city centre). The victim was put in a taxi van, then hauled out and beaten for an additional 4 minutes. Another man, in a red shirt, was taken out of the van had his handcuffs removed and ordered to drive. The van pulled away at 9:00 am with uniformed and plain-clothes members of the security forces inside. We stand by our reporting.
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