GALZ Volunteer Youth Coordinator Charged under POSA

Published: March 12, 2014

Zimbabwe Republic police on Wednesday 12 March 2014 arrested and charged

Natasha Dowell, a volunteer youth coordinator with GALZ for allegedly convening
a public meeting without authority from the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP).
The police arrested Natasha Dowell and Tawanda Maguze, a training Facilitator
at Bronte Hotel in Harare. The two were attending training on basic digital
storytelling techniques for multimedia content production and basic mobile and
digital security, including data protection and Internet security organised by
GALZ. The remaining eighteen training participants had their details recorded
and were asked to remain behind at the venue. The participants later left the
venue freely.
 
Police from the Law and Order Section at Harare Central Police Station charged
Dowell, who was represented by Tonderai Bhatasara of Mupanga Bhatasara
Attorneys, a member of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights with contravening
Section 25 (5) of the Public Order and Security Act (POSA) Chapter 11:17 and
claimed that she should have sought authority from the ZRP to convene the
“public” meeting.
 
Natasha Dowell denied the charge and insisted that GALZ was exempt from
complying with the POSA provision. The Police have indicated that they will
proceed by way of summons. Tawanda Muguze was released without charge.
//ENDS

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