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Court quashes charges against Hopewell Chin’ono

ZIMBABWEAN journalist Hopewell Chin'ono, who has been detained three times since July 2020, has had his charges of "communicating false information" quashed by Zimbabwe's high court, which ruled that the law under which he was arrested in January no longer exists.

Hopewell Chin'ono

Hopewell Chin'ono

Hopewell was on bail facing a charge brought against him following his tweets regarding the process of his previous detention. The high court ruling stated that the charge of "communicating false information" had no legal basis: the section of the criminal code on which his arrest was based was struck down by the supreme court in 2014.

The first in Hopewell's series of arrests of was in July 2020, and followed tweets supporting an anti-government rally and reporting on corruption by government and the fate of around US $60 million in covid supplies. He was subsequently detained on a charge of obstruction of justice after tweeting about the circumstances of his detention and denial of bail.

The International Press institute reported that bail conditions prevented Hopewell from using social media for anything that might be critical of the ruling Zanu-PF government. He still faces trial for obstruction of justice.