Since last week online campaigns had been circulated by email and on the social networking website Facebook, calling on Zimbabweans to take part in a ‘Million Citizens March’ on Tuesday. The aim of the protest was to call for Robert Mugabe to step down from power, just like similar civil uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya.
However some overzealous police officers in Bulawayo arrested Sibanda at Holiday Inn hotel in the city where she was having a meeting with Mpilo hospital staff and Ministry of Health officials. The meeting was meant to organise a fundraising event for the dilapidated government hospital.
“It was just a small meeting to organise a fundraising event for the hospital but were surprised when police in riot gear stormed the hotel before arresting me and officials from Health Ministry,” Sibanda who was detained for more than five hours at Bulawayo Central police station told Radio VOP after release.
Sibanda and five Ministry of Health officials who were accused of support the anti-government march and were also charged with holding a meeting without police clearance. They were only released after the intervention of their lawyers.
On Monday heavily armed police in riot gear also went on rampage in Bulawayo central business district beating up people for standing in groups over the one million march.
Last week former MDC legislator for Highfield Munyaradzi Gwisai and 44 other human rights activists were arrested and charged with trying to oust President Robert Mugabe after being found watching videos of the Egyptian and Tunisian revolution in Harare. There are still languishing in remand prison after denied bail by a Harare Magistrate.