Harare – Zimbabwean War Veterans Minister Tshinga Dube has blasted recent police brutality, describing the cops involved as "overzealous", a report said on Monday.
According to NewsDay, Dube said that the mauling by dogs and teargasing of demonstrators, some of them children, during the recent widespread demonstrations in the country had been "uncalled for".
Dube further called on the authorities responsible for the police to look into how they treat children during demonstrations.
"It's very, very unfortunate. So what we can only do is to speak to their higher authorities. They [authorities] must look upon these issues very seriously. Kids are kids and you will find that anywhere in the world they are taken by storm, and if that happens, they want to be seen participating," Dube was cited as saying.
This comes just less than a month after the country was brought to a standstill by protesters who have been calling for President Robert Mugabe's head over the country's worsening economy.
Reports indicated that the recent national "shutdown" strike closed many businesses, shops and schools, with public transport and some government departments and courts also not operating.
A previous News24 report said at least 43 kids had been hospitalised after inhaling teargas let off by riot police inside their block of flats in Bulawayo.
According to the report, the incident took place when police responded to sporadic attacks by a group of young people during the recent demonstrations against Mugabe.
Meanwhile, a recent report had indicated that a 1-year-old baby died after she allegedly inhaled teargas.
The baby was sleeping when police arrived and fired teargas canisters.
The father, David Mutasa, said he noticed his daughter had difficulty breathing and tried to get the police to help, but his pleas fell on deaf ears.
- News 24