Fees Protest: Arrested UZ Students Say They Suffered Degrading Treatment At Police Station

Five University of Zimbabwe (UZ) students who were last week arrested for protesting over hiked tuition fees said they suffered degrading and dehumanising treatment at a police station where they were detained.

They told a local magistrate that they have been in cells which had no proper flushing systems, in the male holding cells it was actually blocked and waste was overflowing.

The five students- Tinovimba Musengi, Hazel Gwande, Purpose Mangana, Tanyaradzwa Nzvimbo and Charles Moyo – were, however, freed Friday after spending two nights in custody.

They appeared before Harare Magistrate, Munashe Chibanda and were remanded out of custody for September 26.

Through their attorney, Tinashe Chinopfukutwa of the Zimbabwe Human Rights lawyers, the students said:

There was no demarcation of the toilets and no privacy.

The students were charged with disorderly conduct in a public place after they allegedly sang at the UZ main campus disturbing usual business around midday near a venue that was being used for a conference.

They were later dispersed and arrested at different locations on campus.

Moyo was reportedly arrested whilst making calls threatening other students, who were attending lectures.

Mangana, Gwande and Musengi allegedly disturbed lectures at the Faculty of Engineering at the time of their arrest, whilst Nzvimbo was part of a group of students protesting at the Computer Science department.

Meanwhile, UZ has since announced new fee structures for the August – December 2022 Semester. 

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