Tanzania’s main opposition leader, Mbowe Freeman has been charged with terrorism related offenses by a court in the country following his arrest that drew international concern and criticism of the country’s new president.
According to the opposition party Chadema “Mbowe had been charged in Kisutu court with terrorism crimes without his family or lawyers present”.
State prosecutor Ester Martin said Mbowe had been charged with two counts of “economic sabotage”, crimes that do not allow for bail in Tanzania.
Mbowe was detained last week along with 15 other members of the party in a late-night crackdown.
TOS NEWS reported that the opposition leader and other Chadema officials were arrested in the Lake Victoria port city of Mwanza last Wednesday ahead of a planned public meeting to demand constitutional reform.
Mbowe was transferred to a prison in Dar es Salaam where police said he was being held “for plotting terrorism acts including to kill government leaders”.
State prosecutors, however, said the terrorism charges against Mbowe did not relate to his planned activities in Mwanza but alleged offenses that occurred last year in a different part of Tanzania.
Six others were also being charged with the same offenses, he added. The case will be mentioned in court on August 5.