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Zimbabwe Lawyers Protest Unjust Arrests

A Zimbabwean court has denied bail to an opposition politician who called for protests against government corruption and rolled over a similar case against a journalist to Friday. Jacob Ngarivhume, who called for the July 31 street demonstrations with support from the main opposition party, was arrested together with freelance journalist Hopewell Chin’ono and charged with inciting the public to commit violence. A magistrate on Thursday said if released, Ngarivhume would continue to promote violent protests and urge the public to break a coronavirus lockdown. He will remain in prison detention until a routine court appearance next month. Another magistrate separately deferred the bail hearing for Chin’ono, a Harvard University Nieman Fellow, to Friday. His detention drew sharp criticism in Zimbabwe and abroad. Ngarivhume’s lawyer said he would appeal the ruling at the High Court. The two men face up to 10 years’ jail if convicted. Critics say the duo is being persecuted for speaking out against corruption in government.