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Police ban CCC Marondera rally citing “mini car rally”, lawyers challenge

Police have turned down a request by the opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) to hold a by-election rally in Marondera citing that a “mini car rally” required seven days’ notice to the Regulating Authority.

CCC, on the 8th of March notified police of its intention to hold a rally in Marondera on the 12th. The opposition party said the rally would consist of a mini car rally around Rudhaka Stadium prior to the address.

In response, the police said the mini car rally needed seven days’ notice to the Regulating Authority according to the Maintenance of Peace and Order Act Chapter 11:23. 

“Reference is made to your notification dated 08 March 2022 with the above subject,” read a letter by P. Mtetwa, officer commanding Marondera Police District.

“In your notification I have noted that you intend to hold a campaign rally consisting of a mini car rally around Rudhaka Stadium prior to the address.

“What you are terming mini car rally is infact a procession that requires seven (7) days notice to the Regulating Authority according to (the) Maintenance of Peace and Order Act Chapter 11:23.

“Given the above reason your notification is invalid as it does not fully comply with the requirements of (the) Maintenance of Peace and Order Act (MOPA) Chapter 11:23.”

The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) led by Jeremiah Bamu have since filed an urgent High Court application seeking to overthrow the police decision.

“Jeremiah Bamu has on behalf of CCC filed an urgent application at the High Court seeking to overturn the Police ban of their Marondera rally scheduled for Saturday. ZRP invoked provisions of MOPA by telling CCC that its notification is invalid,” ZLHR said in a statement.

“In disapproving CCC Marondera rally, Police took issue with its intention to hold a mini-car rally around Rudhaka Stadium prior to an address by the opposition party leader Nelson Chamisa.

“Human rights lawyer Obey Shava has written to ZRP advising them that CCC is now doing away with the mini-car rally aspect.” Nehanda Radio

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