The five civil society activists who were arrested on allegations of undergoing training to violently overthrow President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government are reported to be undergoing cruel and inhumane conditions at the Remand Prison.

According to one of the lawyers representing the five, Rose Hanzi from the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), the five were denied warm jerseys at the prison despite the fact that Zimbabwe is now in its winter season.

Writing on Twitter Hanzi said,

Very disheartening, in fact, cruel, inhumane, degrading treatment & violation of the right to health for some detained CSOs staffers to be denied warm cardigans by Zim Prisons in this weather.

This then led to revelations that one of the five, Farirai Gumbonzvanda, had been se_xually molested at the Prison with another activist Makomborero Haruzivishe writing,

Most disheartening is how they denied them opportunities to communicate with families and could not guarantee that the indecent assault that happened to Farirai would not happen again.

Their fundamental rights are being violated in letter and spirit.

This was confirmed by Hanzi who replied back

Very sad, prison officers quick to confiscate privileged communication between lawyers & clients but turning a blind eye on sexual harassment of inmates in their custody…

Four of the human rights campaigners namely George Makoni aged 38 years, Tatenda Mombeyarara aged 37 years, Gamuchirai Mukura aged 31 years, Nyasha Mpahlo aged 35 years were arrested on Monday 20 May 2019 upon disembarking from a South African Airways while Farirai Gumbonzvanda aged 26 years, was arrested on Tuesday 21 May at Robert Mugabe International Airport.