Facebook post lands man in Zimbabwe court

Tuesday May 24 2011

Photo/FILE  Mavhudzi allegedly wrote: “I’m overwhelmed, don’t know what to say Mr PM.  “What happened in Egypt is sending shockwaves to all dictators around the world. No weapon but unity of purpose. Worth emulating, hey.”

Photo/FILE Mavhudzi allegedly wrote: “I’m overwhelmed, don’t know what to say Mr PM. “What happened in Egypt is sending shockwaves to all dictators around the world. No weapon but unity of purpose. Worth emulating, hey.” 

By KITSEPILE NYATHI, NATION Correspondent

HARARE

A Zimbabwean man who allegedly urged Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai to emulate the protests that toppled Egyptian and Tunisian leaders through a post on the social networking site Facebook will make a court appearance on June 10.

Vikas Mavhudzi, the first person to be arrested over Facebook posts in the country in February was charged with posting offensive messages on Mr Tsvangirai’s wall.

Prosecutors say he wanted to incite the politician’s supporters to revolt against President Robert Mugabe, who has been in power for 31 years, in the same way longtime Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak and Tunisia’s Ben Ali were toppled.

Mavhudzi allegedly wrote: “I’m overwhelmed, don’t know what to say Mr PM.

“What happened in Egypt is sending shockwaves to all dictators around the world. No weapon but unity of purpose. Worth emulating, hey.”

He is currently out of custody on US$200 bail and will appear before a magistrates court in the second city of Bulawayo.

Zimbabwean police in February arrested 46 activists who were allegedly found watching a video of the Egypt uprisings and charged them with treason.

The courts released 38 for lack of evidence and the remaining six including a former opposition lawmaker Munyaradzi Gwisai are awaiting trial.