Zimbabwe police ordered not to block opposition rally

June 21st, 2008 - 10:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Johannesburg/Harare, June 21 (DPA) A High Court judge in Zimbabwe Saturday ordered the police not to block a rally planned in Harare Sunday by the country’s main opposition party Movement for Democratic Change (MDC). The ruling by Justice Joseph Musakwa overrules a decision by the police to ban the rally, to be addressed by MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai before next Friday’s presidential run-off election.

“The judge has ordered the police not to interfere with the intended rally,” said Alec Muchadehama, the MDC lawyer.

In the first round of the vote in March, Tsvangirai beat President Robert Mugabe but failed to garner the absolute majority.

Luke Tamborinyoka, MDC director of information, was cautious regarding the High Court ruling.

“This is good news but it must be remembered that in the past the courts have granted us permission to hold rallies but Zanu PF militia has blocked us,” he said.

Tsvangirai has been detained by police five times while campaigning and a number of MDC leaders are either on the run or in jails.

The run-up to the second round of polls has been marred by violence. The opposition claims that that the Zanu PF militia and army have killed about 70 of its supporters and displacing more than 30,000 people.

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