Legislation limiting right of free assembly

Biti and Another v Minister of Home Affairs and Another (34/2002) [2002] ZWSC 9 (27 February 2002)

The applicants sought a declaration that section 24 of the Public Order and Security Act (the Act) contravened sections 20 and 21 of the Constitution that provide for the freedoms of expression, assembly and association.

Section 24 of the Act provides that the organiser of a public gathering is required to issue a well written notice, four days before an intended gathering, to the regulating authority for the area in which the meeting is to be held, and that if he fails to do so, he commits an offence.

DARE & Others v Saunyama N.O. & Others AND Zimbabwe Divine Destiny v Saunyama & Others (HH 589-16 HC 9469/2016 HC 8940/2016 HC 9470/2016) [2016] ZWHHC 589 (04 October 2016)

The 1st respondent, the police officer commanding Harare District, issued a notice in terms of section 27(1) of the Public Order and Security Act [Chapter 11:07] (POSA) in terms of which he banned for a period the holding of all public processions and demonstrations in the Central Business District of Harare, for two weeks.

This application challenged the validity of the statutory instruments which held that all public processions and demonstrations were temporarily banned.

Law Assocation of Zambia v Attorney General (Appeal No. 8/2014) [2016] ZMSC 46 (13 May 2016)

This was an appeal against the decision of the High Court stating that sections 5 and 6 of the Public Order Act, Cap 113 Laws of Zambia (POA) do not violate the constitutional provisions on freedom of expression and assembly.

The court determined whether the POA, as amended, was constitutional and addressed concerns raised by the court in the Mulundika judgment over unconstitutionality of the pre amended section 5(4). Second, whether the police were applying the provisions in the POA in a fair manner?


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