Senior Newsday Journalist, Blessed Mhlanga was briefly arrested by Zimbabwean police in Mabvuku yesterday before being latter released without charge.
Speaking to this reporter, the journalist said there were no charges leveled against him and that the police released him after a brief detention without charge. He said that it seemed to be routine police harassment of journalists.
Blessed’s brief detention comes hot on the heels of the arrest of investigative journalist Hopewell Chin’ono, who has since been denied bail and is to appear back in court on the 7th of August for trial. He has been charged with inciting the public to participate in violence, together with opposition leader Jacob Ngarivhune, who is the face of the #31July demonstration and is also leader of a small oppsoition party called Transform Zimbawe.
The United Nations has since issued a statement expressing it’s worries about the conduct of the Zimbabwean government, where the body is said that it is worried by what it sees as the use of Covid 19 lockdown regulations to stifle dissent and reduce democratic space.