This was said by Professor Lovemore Madhuku at a press Conference held today at the Media centre,, following the 420hr community service judgment passed on Gwisai today at the Rotten Row Margistrates’ court.
Professor Madhuku said the civil society’s activities are encouraging because according to him, they seem to be putting enough pressure to have their voices and concerns being heard, though he admitted that the process is gradual.
He went on to commend the efforts by the CSOs, mentioning the Shamva incident, saying it is an exercise of soft power on the part of the civil society since their demonstration led to the arrest of the policemen that had murdered people.
The Professor also spoke on elections saying polls are not necessary if the government steals votes.
“There’s no purpose of elections if a government steals the elections…”, said Madhuku.
Zimbabwe Young Women’s Network for Peace building representative, Grace Chirenje rejected the judgement passed saying the accusations were baseless.
She went on to say the government is muting the people’s voices and because of that, Zimbabweans should stand and fight for their rights.
Also at the press conference was Japhet Moyo from the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions(ZCTU), who aired his sentiments on the issue.
Japhet described the judgement passed as a wake up call saying the judicial system of Zimbabwe is still as corrupt as ever and he called the current Parliament the worst of all which has even failed to deliver.
According to him there should not have been any sentence at all because every Zimbabwean has the right to exercise their right to access to information., and so Gwisai had no reason to be arrested for watching the video of the Egypt revolutions.
Moyo urged the civil society to work towards democratizing the Zimbabwean nation.
Raymond Majongwe however expressed bitterness saying that there is no consolation in the judgment passed today. He said the people should not rest until these oppressive type of governance is overthrown, adding on that no-one should be threatened by mere convictions and sentences.
Lovemore Matombo who is also from the ZCTU was for the idea of people demonstrating for peace in the streets, saying people should not tire when it comes to making statements on their stance on the issue of proper governance.
This was seconded by Abel Machisa who even pledged to lead the demonstrations once people decide to take to the streets.
The press conference was held following the judgement that was passed on Munyaradzi Gwisai and five other civic activists who were arrested last year for watching a video footage of mass uprisings in Egypt that toppled long time ruler Hosni Mubarak.
Harare Magistrate Kudakwashe Jarabini passed a judgement of 420 hrs of community service and a US$500 on Gwisai and his fellows.
By Mercy Ngwebvu