Amnesty International it is unconscionable that Jacob Ngarivhume, leader of the opposition Transform Zimbabwe party, spent eight months in prison for simply organising a peaceful protest
In a statement, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for Southern Africa Khanyo Farisè said Ngarivhume never have been tried, let alone convicted in the first place.
Farise said his imprisonment is a travesty, and an affront to Zimbabwe’s constitution and the country’s international human rights obligations.
He said, “No one should be jailed for exercising their human rights. The authorities must uphold and ensure Jacob Ngarivhume’s right to an effective remedy including adequate compensation. Jacob Ngarivhume’s case is just one example of an alarming increase in the misuse of the justice system to target, intimidate and harass opposition leaders, human rights defenders, activists, journalists, and other critical voices.
Authorities must stop weaponizing the justice system as a tool to persecute opposition figures or anyone who speaks out against allegations of corruption.”
Farise noted that authorities must respect, protect, promote and fulfil the human rights of everyone including to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association.
Ngarivhume’s lawyer Professor Lovemore Madhuku told VOA Studio 7 that the state failed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that his client was linked to a Twitter account that posted a message inciting public violence in 2020.
Ngarivhume was one of the leaders of an anti-corruption protest which was crushed by state security agents. VOA