By Moses Matenga
Human rights lawyer Douglas Coltart has sued Home Affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe and Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga for ZWL$12,5 million over his unlawful arrest.
Coltart was arrested in 2019 along with four pro-democracy campaigners, Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe secretary-general Robson Chere, Jessica Drury, Munyaradzi Ndawana and Precious Ndlovu at a local lodge while in possession of a book titled Pedagogy of the Oppressed.
Police argued they were strategising on “spearheading a host of civil disobedience in Zimbabwe”.
The book was written by Brazilian educator Paulo Freire, and encourages people to speak out.
Coltart and his four alleged accomplices also sued the National Prosecuting Authority of Zimbabwe (NPAZ) for wrongful prosecution.
Beatrice Mtetwa of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, represented the five, who were later acquitted.
Coltart, Chere, Drury, Ndawana and Ndlovu yesterday filed summons at the Harare Magistrates’ Court seeking an order compelling Kazembe, Matanga, the NPAZ, Detective Sergeant Lovemore Marwisa and Detective Constable Dennis Muroiwa to pay them compensation amounting to $12,5 million as damages for wrongful arrest and malicious prosecution, embarrassment and humiliation.
They were being represented by Tinashe Chinopfukutwa of ZLHR. News Day