Chrispen Rambu, who is an opposition muncipial official, was said to have called the President a fool while comparing his handling of COCID-19 with his South African counterpart.
He was eventually charged by the Police with insulting Mnangagwa and undermining his authority, it said.
The ZLHR said the police believe Rambu sent a WhatsApp message to a local group which unfavourably compared Mnangagwa with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa in the handling of the pandemic.
“Ramaphosa just announced a 500 billion (rand, $26 billion) stimulus package. Seeing him addressing and comparing him with ED you won’t doubt that we are having a fool for a head of state,” the message said, as cited in the ZLHR statement.
The initials ED refer to the president’s full name, Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa.
Zimbabwe’s economy has been on its knees for years and many fear its medical system will not be able to cope with the coronavirus outbreak.
So far the authorities have reported just 29 coronavirus cases and four deaths.
The UN has warned that Zimbabwe suffers from serious shortages of basics, including medicines, while half of the 15 million population is threatened by famine.
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