115 arrested for protesting against hunger in Zimbabwe


The Independent Zimbabwe Campaign reports that on Tuesday 8 November the Zimbabwe trade union movement, headed by the ZCTU (Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions), called a demonstration, against the poverty and hunger the majority of Zimbabweans face right now.

Trade unionists in their thousands, including other opposition groups - Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA), the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), and the International Socialist Organisation (ISO-Zimbabwe) - congregated in central Harare. The police sealed off the area and prevented them from marching to the government offices. The police, mainly picking off prominent leaders, then arrested one hundred people, and took them to the Harare Central Police Station. They were charged under the Public Order and Security Act (POSA), notorious for preventing people from protesting against violations of workers' and human rights. NCA members Lovemore Madhuku and Misheck Shoko have been in detention since 5 November. Today's arrested people have been put in the same cells as the NCA members.

Some of those arrested include: Lovemore Matombo, ZCTU President, Wellington Chibhebhe, ZCTU Secretary General, Netsai Dzinoreva, NOC Member Zimbabwe Social Forum, Briggs Bomba, National Co-ordinator ISO, Aaron Dhliwayo, Harare Branch Co-Ordinator ISO, Munyaradzi Gwisai, National Co-Ordinator ISO, Canwell Muchadya, President ZGAWU (Printing Union), Regis Mututu, Chairperson Zimbabwe Social Forum, Rita Nyamupinga, NOC member Zimbabwe Social Forum.

People today have been uprising in other towns and cities. In Gweru, one of Zimbabwe's largest towns, a regiment of the National Army mutinied and joined demonstrators. The whole regiment was sacked from their jobs and was arrested.

In Bulawayo, the second largest city, ZCTU officials were arrested. Also women from WOZA in Bulawayo and Harare have been arrested.

Those arrested are due in court on Thursday 10 November, when the court should decide whether to grant them bail or to detain them in custody until their trial for POSA offences commences. If they get bail, the cost will be enormous.

Most of those arrested have been transferred from Harare Central police station to Chitungwiza and Dema holding cells 25 & 30 km outside Harare. There are as-yet unconfirmed reports of torture. Seven of those arrested are suffering from HIV and AIDS and are being denied access to vital anti-retroviral medicines that they have to take on a daily basis. Five of those arrested are mothers with children, who are now being forced to sleep on concrete floors in filthy conditions.

In addition, seven student leaders at the University of Zimbabwe were arrested on the 9th of November 2005 when they marched to the Vice-Chancellor's office in support of the hunger marchers.

We need solidarity to fight this struggle. We need the many souls in the many different countries to co-ordinate actions against this tyranny. Take action wherever you are. This fight will be won!

Please call:
Harare Central: +263 4 733033, +263 4 721212, and +263 4 725803
General Headquarters: +263 4 700171, +263 4 729137
Chitungwiza: +263 70 22001
Dema +263 70 23142 and +263 70 21928
Attorney General +263 4 774539 and +263 4 781769

Please fax +263 4 771 420

More background on the protest and a list of demands from ISO Zimbabwe.

homepage:: http://sa.indymedia.org

add a comment on this article

The rains of dissent

fatso 10.Nov.2005 17:29

While the rains fall, they pound the roofs of the cells that hold those with dignity in their hearts. 115 comrades who fought poverty on Tuesday are being held in the poverty of Chitungwiza holding cells. In darkness, putrid smells, bloody hands. Allegations of torture. Not charged with a crime but still being held. Women with children, people living with HIV/AIDS. A desperate regime has no shame, no mercy. We hear that despite lawyers taking an urgent application for release to the courts it is likely that this dying regime will try to hold those with dignity in their hearts until next week. They still think baton sticks can crush dignity.

This regime is in fear. There have been 3 demonstrations in Harare in the past 5 days. The National Constitutional Assembly demonstrated on Saturday for a new constitution. The ZCTU gathered on Tuesday to march against poverty while solidarity actions sprung up around the country, from youths distributing freedom literature at High Glen ghetto shopping centre to workers' actions in Mutare. Wednesday saw a student demonstration at University of Zimbabwe against privatisation and low-pay outs. Zanu's crony capitalist management of the economy has seen the rains of discontent and dissent falling. Pounding the ground. Breaking the tarmac. This rain won't stop until we harvest freedom.

We call on those who support dignity and freedom to carry out solidarity actions. Comrades in Harare, go to Makoni holding cells and demand to see the arrested comrades. Jam the police phone lines with your calls. Comrades outside of Zimbabwe, picket your local zanu (pf) embassy, jam its phone lines and emails with your complaints and heart-held beliefs. Build a false jail with bars outside the illegitimate embassy. Perform street theatre about the poverty in Zimbabwe created by this crony capitalist regime. Sign and spread the petition attached to this email. Let creativity be an expression of freedom in the face of tyranny.

Free Briggz Bomba and Sydney Chisi of the Uhuru Youth Council!
Free Our Zimbabwe Social Forum Comrades!
Free All 115 Political Prisoners!


comrade fatso
-uhuru youth council-

Zim telephone / faxes

The Ministry of Home Affairs can be reached on the Following numbers:

Phone: 263-4-723653/703642

Fax: Permanent secretary's office: 263-4-707231

Ministers Office: 263-4-726716

Harare Central police station: 263-4-777777

Law and Order Section: fax: 263-4-251505

Avondale Police Station: 263-4-336632

*(This is where some protesters from the ZCTU protests and Students are
being held)*

Makoni Police station:



Harare Central:
263-4-733033, 721212, and 725803
General Headquarters: 263-4-700171, 729137
Chitungwiza: 263 -
263 - 070-23142 and 21928
Attorney General: 263 -
(code) 774539 and 781769

Zimbabwe Consulate (South Africa): 011 8382156

Zimbabwe High Commission, South Africa: (0)12 342 5125

the day after the rain..

fatso 12.Nov.2005 11:56

Rain will pound, endlessly, till sunlight comes through. 3 days of people power pounding the ears and eyes of this regime's police has led to the release of the political prisoners. The 115 comrades imprisoned on tuesday for demonstarting against poverty are being let out today after lawyers took an urgent applicxation for release to the attorney general. The AG agreed to have then let out for the weekend after which they will be 'summoned' to court.

This is a small victory for the solidarity movement that has knitted words and action together within Zimbabwe and the region. This is a small victory for the regional solidarity movement that emerged from the Uhuru Youth Camp at the Southern Afrika Social Forum. This is a small victory in the rainy season when revolutionary politics is slippery but pregnant. Now this emerging solidarity movement must grow. There are the bogus senate elections on November 26 where we call on comrades in the region to stage mock elections outside zanu (pf) embassies or public places. These are elections made for the elites and the chefs at a time when the billions of dollars should be spent on food and wages. There is also the first week of December, the Regional Week of Action against Poverty and Capital, that was decided by the many Southern Afrikan movements represented at the Uhuru Youth Camp. Let this be a week that brings together the suffering poor from Harare to Soweto, uniting even further this regional movement for freedom.

Now we are going to welcome our comrades from jail. We will keep you posted about their release and the way forward. They may jail the resistors but never the resistance!

Uhuru! Afrika!

Simukai! Rise Up! Sukhumani!

comarde fatso
-uhuru youth council-