from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE, (CAJ News) – VILLAGERS in eastern Zimbabwe are protesting against failure by some diamond mining companies to share proceeds from the exploitation of minerals.
The locals in Chiadzwa in Manicaland province have asked a Zimbabwean court to overturn a police ban of their protest.
The villagers have resorted to legal action to challenge the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) ban.
Newman Chiadzwa, a trustee of Chiadzwa Community Development Trust, said the demonstration was aimed at demanding payment of proceeds from the diamond sales, which was promised to the community under the Chiadzwa Community Share Ownership Trust in 2019 by the government.
The government owns a stake in the diamond mining companies.
Police have argued the demonstration did not comply with provisions of section 7(2)(h) and section 10(1)(c) of the Maintenance of Peace and Order (MOPO) Act.
It is among legislation critics believe the government employs to quash opposition.
The Chiadzwa Community Development Trust has engaged the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, which has filed an application at Mutare Magistrates Court seeking an order to set aside the prohibition notice issued by police.
Hearing of the application will continue on December 1.
Security personnel have been accused of human rights violations during the diamond rush to Chiadzwa since 2006.
– CAJ News