A Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) member on Wednesday told Harare magistrate Taurai Manuwere that police officers were employed to defend President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The police officer, Violet Kadiki, who is based at Warren Park Police Station, said it is the duty of police officers to defend Mnangagwa from those who oppose the government.
Kadiki made the remarks during cross-examination by lawyer Alec Muchadehama representing five opposition activists accused of violating COVID-19 lockdown regulations.
The three activists, Harare West MP, Joannah Mamombe (MDC Alliance), Cecilia Chimbiri, Makomborero Haruziviishe, Stanley Manyenga and Lovejoy Chitengu were arrested for allegedly holding an unsanctioned demonstration in Warren Park at the height of coronavirus lockdowns in May 2020.
Kadiki told the court that they arrested the accused for carrying placards written: “ED must Go”.
Asked by Muchadehama if saying ED must go is bad, she responded by saying “yes”. Added Muchadehama:
So what do those placards written ED must go mean? … What if the protestors were saying ED meaning another politician, Egypt Dzinemunhenzva?
Kadiki replied she only knew “ED” as the President. She said:
They were asking the President to go and we are there to defend the President from those who oppose the government.
Dzinemunhenzva, a perennial Presidential aspirant, was one of the candidates in the 2018 polls.
Kadiki said she could not identify the accused persons in the dock, saying they were wearing face masks at the time of their arrest.
The trial was postponed to Tuesday.