WOZA activist arrested for disrobing at police station in protest

ZANU PF activist Sheila Mutsenhu doing her thong-protest in front of the US Ambassador in January

By Violet Gonda
15 February 2013

In Mutare last month ZANU PF activist Sheila Mutsenhu took off her clothes in front of the US Ambassador to Zimbabwe, protesting the targeted sanctions imposed by western countries. She wasn’t arrested.

But on Thursday Bulawayo police arrested a Women of Zimbabwe Arise activist, Bertha Sibanda, who removed her clothes inside the police station in protest, after she was beaten for taking part in demonstrations by the pressure group.

WOZA leader Jenni Williams told SW Radio Africa that Sibanda was part of a group of over 180 activists who took part in anti police brutality demonstrations in Bulawayo on Valentine’s Day.

“Sibanda is charged with contravening section 132 of the Code; that is publicly exposing herself and being a nuisance,” Williams said.

The WOZA leader said this should have been an offense that attracted nothing more than a fine, but the police are going to keep her in custody over the weekend to punish her.

“Even under the new constitution there is no one who will be kept in custody for longer than 48 hours and they know this but they are just punishing her.”

The group says the Valentine’s Day demonstration was part of their annual ‘One Love’ protests.

Police refused to comment but WOZA says 190 people, including a number of bystanders, were arrested.

“We estimate over 50 members were beaten with the hard rubber baton sticks that the riot reaction group police carry,” read a WOZA statement.

The pressure group is also calling on authorities to provide enough information to members of the public on the new draft constitution, so that people can make informed decisions at the referendum, scheduled for March 16th.

“They only want to give us 30 days to read this very complex document and decide whether we should vote yes or no.” She added: “So we are demanding a proper outreach process so that we have time to read and understand so that we don’t just rush to vote no, as we did before.”

Meanwhile US Ambassador Wharton has said he is very concerned about the unequal application of the law in Zimbabwe.

“In the last few weeks I have observed and thought about one of the challenges that I believe threatens Zimbabwe’s stability and prosperity: unequal application of the rule of law. Since November, we have seen elements of the Zimbabwe Republic Police engage in a clear pattern of harassment through arbitrary detentions, politically-motivated searches, and arrests on spurious charges against individuals and entities that are operating within the law.

“The U.S. is committed to a prosperous Zimbabwe which respects the rights of its peoples. As President Obama’s representative here, I am deeply concerned about the pattern of harassment of civil society organizations and the use of violence against civilians by elements of the Zimbabwe Republic Police – such as occurred against protestors from Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) yesterday in Bulawayo.”

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10 Responsesto “WOZA activist arrested for disrobing at police station in protest”

  1. Mutongi Gava says:

    Kugocha kunoda kwaamai kwemwana kunodzima moto ufunge zvako Ambassador Wharton!!

  2. super mondo says:

    you can see this slapper in the pic is a zanu scum she is too well fed to be mdc.

    • Tanonoka Joseph Whande says:

      Come on Super Mondo, Sheila has a nice mid section, wouldn’t you say?

      • Chimbwidos ~Warvets says:

        And you too, Tanonoka Joseph Whande. Are you happily married? Oh, no, no Gosh Aah, guys, you can get in serious trouble as this woman can take you all to the cleaners.

        • Tanonoka Joseph Whande says:

          And you Chimbwidos Warvets? Why did you enlarge that photograph and hang in
          it your bedroom? Married woman my foot. Uyu ndewedu tose!!!!

          • Chimbwidos says:

            Asi iro gero iri rakazvizarira blazo. Kudya mariyemadimondi atekeshera kumadira blazo. Kana butiyake yakazvisarira. Even the way His Excellency, the Ambassador of the United States, is looking at this woman is suspect. Like former president Bill Clinton scandal at the White House with Monica Lewinsky, he could have tried his luck if he was not surrounded by too many people. Just look at his piecing eyes like he would like to eat this woman

    • Chimbwidos Warvets says:

      Oh no no, Super Mondo is having some ideas about Sheila Matsenhu, a happily married woman. Don’t get carried away Super Mondo Buffoon.

  3. Tanonoka Joseph Whande says:

    What a disgrace! Meanwhile, her kids are MDC activists! This Mutsenhu woman is looking for intimate business in the wrong place at the wrong time. Where is Mutsenhu? Possibly was given a ‘diplomatic post’ out of the country.I wonder what WOZA and Grave (sorry, Grace) Mugabe think. I see that none of them has commented. Shame.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Apa kusviba kuti tsva. mazamu ungati imbwa yakasvoodza. disgusting. Zvimwe zvinongoda kuvharira mudhirezi. Zamu kuramba kukwana mu bra. Kana ukaridzvanya rinoerera (it flows) richibuda muruoko

  5. Anonymous says:

    Iri Mutsenhu idhikondo remaMutare rinotozivikanwa chero nepwere ipi zvayo. Ari wangu mukadzi anoswera ava kwavatezvara.Uku hakungadzi kuroora pachivanhu chedu , mukadzi anobudisira pamhene zvinhu zvinofanora kufukidzirwa here nhai vedu. AITOFUNGA KUTI ATOVA MUBHEDHIRUMHU NOMUCHENA UYO.

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