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was abducted and dumped close to the Botswana border
April 23, 2007
2015hrs on Thursday the 19th of April 2007 at the end
of the ZIMCODD/
public meeting held in Bulawayo at the Royal Hotel, i in the company
of Clemence Bere(NUST SRC President), Mehluli Dube ( Vice President),
Vanencio Jachi and Admire Zaya went to Ritz to buy a couple of drinks.
From there we went to Khami Bar. When we were in the bar, four guys
approached us and said that we were under arrest and were taking
us in for questioning about statements made in the public meeting.
Bere and Mehluli managed to run away whilst we were being force
marched out of Khami bar. One of the four guys identified himself
as a CID officer from Central Police Station, the other three did
not show their identification. We were forced into a white 323-vehicle
with government number plates beginning with a ‘GH’. Three of the
guys got into the vehicle with Vanencio Jachi and me. The fourth
one got into another vehicle. There was a fifth guy whom I saw outside
and recognized him as one of the people at the public meeting. He
was talking to the Officers but did not go with us.
us to Mzilikazi Police Station saying they were going to detain
us there. At Mzilikazi two of them got out and went into the Charge
office only to come out minutes later taking Jachi out and leaving
me in the car. That’s the last time I saw Jachi. At around 2300hrs
they drove along Khami road heading for what I later discovered
to be Solusi Police sub office. At Solusi I was beaten up. They
were using their fists to hit me on the head. They were asking for
the whereabouts of Promise Mkwananzi and Clemence Bere’s residential
address. They said: "munoda kuzviita vanhu vakangwara,
tinoda kukubatai muri mese, kana takubatai tinoda kukutaridzai chidzidzo
chekuti hamuna kwamunosvika. Vanhu vatirikuda ndi Mkwananzi na Bere."
(You think you are clever and untouchable. We want to round up all
of you at once and teach you a lesson just to show you, you are
fighting a loosing battle). They also said they have been seeing
us in public meetings lambasting the government and insighting violence.
While at Solusi
they searched my bag and found ZIMCODD and TI-Z material which they
forced me to tear into small pieces. They then told me to put the
small pieces together and read which was impossible. They started
beating me up saying how can you fail to read when you are learned,
they were saying, "Hausi ku NUST here iwe, dotiverengera
mapepa ayo, handiti wakadzidza." (Are you not at NUST?
read those papers for us, you cannot fail to read because you are
educated). After a while they disappeared around 0100hrs only to
come back after 2hrs and drove me for about 5-10kms out of Tsholotsho.
At this point I thought they were taking me into a bush to kill
me. They stopped the car and forced me out and sped off leaving
me behind around 0800hrs. I was feeling numb from the beatings,
was hungry and disoriented because I had never been to this part
of the country. I just gathered some bit of strength walked back
in the direction from which we came. I got to Tsholotsho Shopping
Centre some 120kms out of Bulawayo.
While at the
shopping centre I narrated my ordeal to some man who then gave me
transport to Nyamandlovu. That was now Friday. In Nyamandlovu I
also talked to someone who gave me a place to put up and also assisted
me to get transport to Norwood the following day (Saturday). I managed
to get hold o Admire Zaya and told him where I was. He then called
ZIMCODD, TI-Z and SST.
Soon after I got a call from ZIMCODD that they were coming to pick
me up by then I was sleeping on the side of the road feeling tired,
hungry and sick. They picked me up 20minutes later along Nyamandlovu
All I can say
is that those guys are serious, they are determined to crush activism
and that’s when I realized how vulnerable youth activists are. As
for now I just want to go to my rural home in Masvingo and take
a rest and see my family. I am really worried about my comrade Wezhira
(Vanencio Jachi) whose whereabouts I don’t know. They claim that
students are ‘fronts’ for other people and they continuously ask
that who sent you.
in Zimbabwe is bitter, very bitter and the regime will stop at nothing.
Some of our comrades are abducted but their stories are never heard.
They try to break us but our united spirit shall never be broken.
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