Christian relief and development agency, Tearfund, has condemned the arrest last week of six Zimbabwe church leaders by armed police who intervened in a church meeting attended by over 500 people.
The pastors and two others were arrested while attending a dedication service for a regional chapter of the Zimbabwe Christian Alliance (ZCA), in Kadoma, southwest of Harare.
Tearfund’s International Director, Peter Grant said, “More and more often we are seeing the activities of churches and relief agencies disrupted by government intimidation in Zimbabwe. Church leaders dedicated to alleviating desperate poverty spent the weekend in police detention. This action is unacceptable when so much combined effort of the ZCA is committed to helping the poor.”
A press release issued by the ZCA has said that the unlawful detention of the church leaders comes at a time when the socio-economic situation in Zimbabwe has deteriorated to alarming levels. The majority of Zimbabweans are living far below the poverty datum line and thousands of children have failed to resume school because of lack of school fees.