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Zimbabwe, authorities must release opposition MPs unjustly held for 100 days

The continued arbitrary detention of opposition leader and Member of Parliament Job Sikhala and MP Godfrey Sithole, 100 days since their incarceration sometimes without access to lawyers, is revealing of the politicized justice system in Zimbabwe

Job Sikhala and Godfrey Sithole are senior members of the country’s main opposition party Citizen’s Coalition for Change. Sikhala is the chairman and Godfrey Sithole is MP for Chitungwiza North.

Sikhala and Sithole were arrested on 14 June 2022 after attending the funeral of political activist, Moreblessing Ali, who was missing for three weeks before being found murdered and her body mutilated on 11 June 2022.

Zimbabwean authorities have accused the MPs of encouraging their supporters to cause violence in Nyatsime, Chitungwiza, during Ali’s memorial. They are facing charges of inciting violence and were denied bail when they appeared in the magistrates court. Several appeals for bail have since been rejected.
As critics of the government and members of the opposition are frequently harassed and arrested, Amnesty International believes that the charges against Sikhala and Sithole, and the denial of their bail, is an effort to persecute and silence political opposition by the Zimbabwean authorities.

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