Zim govt 'clamps down on dissent' after Covid corruption exposés spark protests
Zimbabwe human rights lawyer Douglas Coltart says the government is willing to do anything to cling onto its power.
The Harare-based activist says recent exposés on Covid-19-related corruption by investigative journalists such as Mduduzi Mathuthu and Hopewell Chin'ono have been a massive flashpoint for unrest in the country.
Chin'ono was arrested two weeks ago on charges of inciting public violence.
Mathuthu's home in Bulawayo was raided by authorities on Thursday ahead of planned demonstrations against the Zim government.
Last week, police warned Zimbabweans not to take part in protests against the corruption linked to Zimbabwe's Covid-19 response.
A number of protesters were arrested in Harare on Friday including award-winning Zimbabwean author Tsitsi Dangarembga. The novelist was released on bail on Saturday.
Coltart says citizens are being arrested for absurd reasons as part of the government's attempt to silence dissent.
Our hospitals are virtually non-functional. Our doctors and nurses are on strike because they don't have equipment and yet 60 million dollars worth of funds that were to be for Covid-19 were looted by senior government officials implicating even the president and the first family.Douglas Coltart, Human rights lawyer - Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
One gentleman was arrested for simply carrying the Zimbabwean flag which I think epitomises the paranoia of the current regime that is doing everything it can to try and clamp down on any dissent.Douglas Coltart, Human rights lawyer - Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
People are being arrested for utterly absurd things and being denied bail.Douglas Coltart, Human rights lawyer - Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
Zim felt like it's on the brink for a very long time. The human rights abuses that we've seen have been there for a long time... but I think there is a feeling at present that things are escalating.Douglas Coltart, Human rights lawyer - Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
It's been building up for decades, in a sense, with a government that refuses to reform; refuses to govern by the consent of the people, and instead uses violence and force.Douglas Coltart, Human rights lawyer - Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
Listen to the discussion on Afternoon Drive with John Maytham:
"Zondo’s comments at the end of the hearing; it was just so bleak! A sombre, grim end to a day," says journalist Erin Bates.Read More
The sector is at a tipping point. Arabile Gumede interviews Philippa Rodseth from industry body, the Manufacturing Circle.Read More
Public works Minister Patricia de Lille responds to a slew of allegations made against her by the Democratic Alliance.Read More
Refilwe Moloto chats to iconic satirist Pieter Dirk-Uys is and heritage activist Patrick Tariq Mellett about our complex heritage.Read More
People's Dialogue leader says 'what is the point of a progressive constitution if it is not even respected by its own government.'Read More
Corruption Watch has released its 2020 report on corruption trends. Arabile Gumede interviews CW's Kavisha Pillay.Read More
Secretary at Amadiba Crisis Committee Nonhle MbuthumaRead More
Our finance minister is famous for his Twitter cook-ups, heavy on the garlic, and the latest one did not fail to caue a reaction.Read More
Jackson Mthembu told the media Ramaphosa was very sick, but spokesperson Tyrone Seale later said he had a common cold.Read More
There’ll be many opportunities for frontier investors in the coming years, says Absa's Somaya Joshua.Read More
There’s an inevitability to it – these commodities (such as vanadium, if the tech improves) have a bright future ahead of them.Read More
"He was having an arguing with a friend and uttered some blasphemy," reports Africa correspondent JJ Cornish.Read More
The Paris Agreement forces companies and lenders to be responsible and to consider the climate in their operations.Read More
Many countries on the Continent are increasingly providing investors with the stability and regulatory certainty they seek.Read More
Supply/demand fundamentals are looking good, for now. Absa Corporate and Investment Banking provides a view on 2020 and beyond.Read More
The National Council of SPCAs (NSPCA) says it has observed the cruel handling of 50,000 sheep destined for the Middle East, directly in contravention of the High Court order issued last week.Read More
The World Health Organization (WHO) on Tuesday declared that Africa is now free from wild polio.Read More
Like all good stories, this one starts in a [mythical because we’re South African] pub … but not for the reasons you imagine.Read More
Jasmine Opperman provides a detailed analysis of Islamic extremist militant groups involved in the insurgencies in Cabo Delgado.Read More