We use cookies to collect and analyse information on site performance and usage to improve and customise your experience, where applicable. View our Cookies Policy. Click Accept and continue to use our website or Manage to review and update your preferences.

IBAHRI notes dropped charges again Zimbabwe lawyers

27 Feb 2024 / human rights Print

IBAHRI notes dropped charges against lawyers

The International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) and Lawyers for Lawyers (L4L) have welcomed the decision of the Zimbabwean authorities to drop charges brought against two human-rights lawyers, Douglas Coltart and Tapiwa Muchineripi.

On 4 September 2023, the lawyers were arrested and charged with obstructing the course of justice and impeding the police from discharging their professional duty.

Coltart and Muchineripi were accused of blocking police from questioning their clients, Womberaishe Nhende and Sanele Mkhuhlani, who are members of the political party Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC).


According to the statements of Nhende and Mkhuhlani, they were hospitalised after being abducted and tortured by state agents in the capital Harare.

On 26 January, the Zimbabwean National Prosecution Authority (ZNPA) withdrew the charges against the two lawyers due to lack of evidence to sustain the prosecution.

Although the ZNPA's decision is welcomed by the IBAHRI and L4L, concern remains about the ongoing pressure on Zimbabwe's legal profession, as evidenced most recently by the intimidation and harassment of human rights lawyer Harrison Nkomo.

Lawyers for Lawyers (L4L) is an independent, non-political and not-for-profit foundation based in the Netherlands, established in 1986 and predominantly funded by donations from lawyers, law firms and lawyers’ organisations.

Gazette Desk
Gazette.ie is the daily legal news site of the Law Society of Ireland