Activists accused of insulting Mugabe three years ago dragged back to court: Lawyers

2016-01-20 21:56


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Zimbabwe - Don't think you're off the hook because you insulted President Robert Mugabe two or three years ago and you weren't jailed: those words could come back to haunt you.

Police in Zimbabwe's southern Masvingo province have revived charges against two Mugabe critics for things they are alleged to have said about the longtime Zimbabwean president more than two years ago, according to lawyers on Wednesday.

Insulting Mugabe, who turns 92 next month, remains a crime in politically-divided Zimbabwe.

That's despite efforts to have anti-insult laws struck off the statute books.

The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) named the two as Naison Mudzuri and Polite Zambezi.

Zambezi got himself arrested when he was travelling on a bus in November 2012. The ZLHR said the activist is alleged to have chanted that Mugabe "will be hanged like Saddam [Hussein]".

Reports at the time said Mudzuri was also arrested on a bus, this time in September 2013, when he allegedly told passengers that Mugabe had "ruined the country".

Both were arrested and taken to court soon after they first made the comments. But they were later freed.

Now police have revived the charges against both activists who have (separately) been charged with undermining Mugabe's authority. The lawyers' group said in a statement that the move represented a fresh "crackdown on dissent" inside Zimbabwe.

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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