In 2022, Tsitsi Dangarembga was discovered responsible of intent to incite public violence after organising anti-government protests.
Acclaimed Zimbabwean filmmaker and novelist Tsitsi Dangarembga has been acquitted by the nation’s Excessive Court docket of staging an anti-government protest in 2020, for which she had initially acquired a six-month suspended jail sentence and a tremendous.
“I can verify that she has been acquitted,” her lawyer Harrison Nkomo stated after her acquittal on Monday. “As her attorneys, we’re grateful as a result of she had not dedicated any offence within the first place.”
In 2022, Dangarembga was discovered responsible by a decrease court docket of taking part in a public gathering with intent to incite public violence whereas breaking COVID-19 protocols. She was tried alongside her good friend and fellow protester Julie Barnes, who was additionally discovered responsible.
This was after a July 2020 protest criticising the federal government’s efforts to take care of corruption and a struggling financial system. Dozens of political activists had been arrested on the time.
Nkomo stated the Excessive Court docket judges didn’t instantly give causes for the acquittal.
Dangarembga, 64, is a fierce critic of President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s authorities. She has been preventing for years towards corruption and demanding reforms and maintained in the course of the trial that Zimbabweans have the proper to display.
Not all protesters have been handled with leniency. Zimbabwean courts have handed down a wave of harsh sentences towards political activists earlier than basic elections this 12 months. Activists and opposition figures additionally say the police have launched into a clampdown on dissidents.
Opposition chief Jacob Ngarivhume, who was arrested concurrently Dangarembga for organising protests, was sentenced final week to 4 years in jail on prices of inciting violence.
Dangarembga’s first novel, Nervous Circumstances, gained the African part of the Commonwealth Writers Prize in 1989. She was the first Black Zimbabwean girl to publish a novel in English. Her ebook This Mournable Physique was nominated for a Booker Prize in 2020.