Write a story

Zimbabwe High Court Overturns Conviction of Opposition Politician for "Falsehoods"

HARARE, Zimbabwe - The Zimbabwean High Court overturned the conviction and sentence of Fadzayi Mahere, a prominent opposition politician and lawyer, on Monday. Mahere, a former member of parliament for the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) party, had been charged with "publishing falsehoods" related to a tweet she posted in 2021.

Rutendo Maraire

Mahere was arrested and jailed after sharing a tweet critical of police brutality, sparking controversy and raising concerns about freedom of expression in Zimbabwe. The tweet referenced a widely circulated video showing a woman confronting a police officer who allegedly harmed her baby. The police had confirmed the incident in an official statement.

Justices Pisirayi Kwenda and Benjamin Chikowore ruled that Mahere's charge was based on a non-existent law, highlighting the legal basis for overturning the conviction.

"The High Court has upheld my appeal. The offence in terms of which I was charged and jailed at Chikurubi was invalid," Mahere stated. "The conviction and sentence have been quashed."

Mahere spent a week in detention before securing bail. She expressed disappointment that the police officer involved in the incident faced no consequences.

"Upon condemning the unconstitutional and excessive use of force, I was arrested on the allegation that I had 'published a falsehood' despite the video evidence of the incident and the contemporaneous statements of eye-witnesses at the scene on the day," she remarked.

Mahere's case drew international attention, with human rights organizations like Amnesty International voicing concerns about the charges against her. Amnesty International previously reported that Mahere was convicted and fined for "publishing or communicating false statements prejudicial to the state."

With the High Court's ruling, Mahere is now considered a free woman with no criminal record. This development raises questions about the use of "falsehoods" charges against critics of the government and the potential for further legal challenges in the future.


Leave a comment

Get In Touch

12th Floor, Fidelity Life Towers 7 Reighly Street,Harare

(263) 776 517 766


Follow Us
Our Photos

© SM News. All Rights Reserved. Design by Webiconic