Zimbabwe government to halt persecution Joanna Mamombe Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova

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Latest Update :  Cecilia and Joanna are being held at Chikurubi Maximun prison since 5 March without conviction. They are being accused of not observing Social distancing while releasing a solidarity statement to the press  for an arrested fellow activist.  Their bail was denied at both magistrate and high courts. Their persecution continues . 

******Please read below an account of what how they have been raped, abducted and tortured following arrest. ****


On 13 May 2020, three female human rights activists; Cecilia Chimbiri, Netsai Marova and Joanna Mamombe, were arrested following a protest they took part in. The peaceful protest called on the Zimbabwean Government to provide vulnerable communities with food during lockdown.

The three women were taken to Harare Central Prison where the police Chief Spokesperson confirmed their arrests. The women subsequently went missing while in Police custody.

36 hours later, Cecilia 31, Joanna 27 and Netsai 25 , were found brutally bruised, sexually molested and tortured. Please watch the videos accompanying this petition for first-hand accounts describing the torture and abuse experienced by each woman during those 36 hours.

The CID (Zimbabwe police) arrested these three women from their lawyer’s premises (Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights in Harare) last week. The Government including Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa and Police Force claim these women’s detailed accounts of torture are fake. In spite of still being in need of medical treatment they are now in remand at Chikurubi Prison in Harare, where they have no access to proper nutrition or medical support and have been refused bail.

WE CALL ON THE UNITED NATIONS AND ALL INTERNATIONAL BODIES THAT STAND FOR GLOBAL HUMAN RIGHTS TO PUT PRESSURE ON THE ZIMBABWE GOVERNMENT TO FOLLOW THE LAWS OF THE DEMOCRATIC CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF ZIMBABWE. THIS PETITION CALLS FOR THE IMMEDIATE HALT OF PERSECUTION AGAINST THESE WOMEN, AND TO CALL FOR A FULL INVESTIGATION INTO THEIR ABDUCTION AND TORTURE WITH THE PERPETRATORS BROUGHT TO JUSTICE .

These activists are now set to appear for trial on 26 August. This tragic persecution at the most inhumane level must be stopped. It would be a travesty should they end sentenced for being raped, tortured and abducted. *

Prior update  : on  1 February 2021 the 3 activists were taken into police custody upon which police settled on a trumped up charge  of police obstruction. they released Netsai to make the charges appear authentic  Joanna and Cecelia were sent to Chikurubi Maximum prison even before their bail hearing. Subsequently they were denied bail at the magistrate court. Without continued scrutiny and condemnation from the international community we fear that Joana and Cecilia will be left in a perilous situation.