Court to hear application to overturn ban on march for Zim activist – lawyers

2016-03-07 20:03

Harare  A judge in Harare will hear an urgent application on Tuesday to get police to overturn a ban on a march for activist Itai Dzamara, who disappeared almost exactly a year ago, said Zimbabwe's Lawyers for Human Rights.

"Justice [Clement] Phiri will on Tuesday @12 hear urgent chamber application to bar police from interfering with @itaidzamara," ZLHR tweeted.

Journalist and activist Dzamara was grabbed by unidentified men from a barber's shop in Harare on March 9 2015. He has not been seen since.

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has blamed President Robert Mugabe's government for his disappearance. 

Senior party official, Eddie Cross, said last year he believed Dzamara had been murdered soon after his abduction.

Expressing grief

The MDC and Dzamara's family wanted to hold a march and prayer meeting in central Harare on Wednesday, but police have denied them permission. 

The police argued the march "could... infringe on the rights of others", Dzamara's brother, author Partson, said in a statement posted to Occupy Africa Unity Square, the Facebook group working to keep the missing activist in the public eye.

"What is detestable is the fact that the police have been pretending to be doing something about our missing family member. They are the same people trying to block us from expressing our grief over Itai's disappearance," Partson Dzamara said.

Amnesty International's southern Africa office tweeted on Monday, "On Wednesday it will be a year since Zimbabwean pro-democracy activist Itai Dzamara disappeared. #WhereisItai?"

An opinion piece in the latest state-controlled Sunday Mail newspaper suggested that Washington was behind Dzamara's abduction.

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