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Zim protest ban lifted, but protesters told not too celebrate just yet

08 September 2016, 19:00

Harare - A two-week protest ban in Zimbabwe was overturned by the country's High Court on Wednesday, but state-owned media says demonstrators should "not to be excited just as yet".

According to the BBC, the challenge was brought by activists, who were opposed to President Robert Mugabe and his government’s  "misrule." 

Trashing the ban imposed by police in Harare last week, High Court judge, Justice Priscilla Chugumbu declared that the country's judiciary operated independently and must be allowed to function without fear, favour, prejudice or interference by other arms of the State, a News Day report said.

Leaders of the protest movements applauded the court ruling describing it as "a brave judgement".

Stan Zvorwadza, one of the activists who challenged the ban was quoted saying that he welcomed the judgement and hoped that they would be able to demonstrate peacefully against the country's mismanagement.

'Temporary hindrance'

The ruling came just a few days after President Robert Mugabe blasted the southern African country's judges for "reckless" rulings allowing demonstrations against his rule.

"It is not just we the ordinary people who should have the understanding" of the need for peace, the veteran leader said, cited in the Sunday News newspaper.

"Our courts, our justice system, our judges should be the ones who understand even better than the ordinary citizens," Mugabe was quoted as saying during at a meeting of the youth arm of his ruling Zanu-PF party in Harare on Saturday.

The state-owned Herald newspaper on Thursday, however, warned that the protest movements should not be quick to celebrate their court victory, saying that the ruling was a "temporary hindrance that would allow for the country's ruling elite time to fix it".

In an in-depth quoting of the ruling, the paper said that the judge emphasised that the curfew was only suspended for seven working days in order for the authorities to align it with the country's constitution. 

Meanwhile, a number of social media users applauded the ruling saying it was about time the country's elite followed the country's statute. 

- News24


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