The Zimbabwe Republic Police CZRP) has banned a demonstration planned by the country’s main opposition political party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) in Gweru.
The MDC demonstration had been set for Tuesday, 20 August 2019 in the Midlands capital as part of a series of protests in the country’s major cities.
Introducing the Pindula News Mobil App
Download from Google Play Store
The demonstrations were aimed at pressurising the ZANU PF-led government to urgently deal with the country’s economy which has been in a tailspin since the military coup in 2017.
Chief Superintendent Officer Commanding Gweru Urban Police T. Chikono notified the MDC that the march will not be allowed to proceed. No reasons were given. He wrote:
The above matter is pertinent. The office acknowledges receipt of your office to hold public demonstrations dated 08 August 2019. This office is not in support of your notice because of the reasons that are attached to the prohibition notice.
The ban on the Gweru demonstration comes as no surprise as the Harare and Bulawayo demonstrations, which had been set for 16 and 19 August respectively, suffered a similar fate.
The MDC Midlands provincial executive confirmed receiving the prohibition notice from the police. Provincial Organising Secretary Lloyd Mukapiko said:
We have not been given the reasons for the demonstration ban. We just received a letter from the police telling us that they had banned our demonstration.