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‘CCC is as good as a banned political party in Zimbabwe’ – Lawyer

A prominent lawyer has said the main opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) party is “as good as a banned political party in Zimbabwe” following the frequent bans of its events by the Zanu-PF regime led by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

This comes after Masvingo police banned CCC leader Nelson Chamisa from leading a “tree planting day” in Gutu North constituency on Thursday.

The law enforcement organisation through Chief Superintendent Taurai Joackim Mambure of Masvingo East police district, told the CCC’s local organiser Champion Lloyd Mupfudze that an unnamed political party had given prior notice to hold a meeting in the same Ward 4.

“Now, therefore, I as the regulating officer do hereby issue this prohibition notice in terms of section 8(9) of the Maintenance of Peace and Order Act prohibiting the holding of the tree planting day scheduled for 15/12/22…

“For the avoidance of doubt, it is declared… that any persons who knowingly oppose or fails to comply with this prohibition notice shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding level 14 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding one year or to both such fine and imprisonment.”

But CCC remained defiant with its deputy spokesman Gift Ostallos Siziba saying they would go ahead with their programme.

The party has since filed an urgent application with the High Court seeking to interdict the police decision.

“We intend to travel to Gutu tomorrow (Thursday) where president Chamisa will launch our national tree planting programme under our ‘Green Zimbabwe’ agenda. Police have banned the event and we are seeking redress. We have an obligation to make our country better and green,” Siziba said.

Human Rights lawyer Obey Shava, who has represented the party in the past said: “CCC is as good as a banned political party in Zimbabwe. It can’t hold rallies and it’s not even be allowed to plant trees. It goes without mentioning that all this is unconstitutional.”

This is not the first time CCC events are being banned. Their rallies ahead of the March by-elections were disrupted by police and suspected members of Zanu-PF.

Political temperatures are on the rise with Zimbabwe set to hold harmonised elections in 2023.

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