Entrenched in evil

Sinqobile Tessa
DISAPPEARED: Itai Dzamara

Zimbabwe regimes have a notorious history of kidnapping, torturing and killing critics and opposition activists.

One would expect things to getter with time, but alas, this evil seems entrenched in the veins of our political space.

A number of people in the country have harrowing tales about the suffering and pain which was afflicted on them for being opposition supporters.

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Sadly, some never lived to tell the story.

The recent and trending case is that of Bishop Tapfumaneyi Masaya, who was on Saturday bundled into a car by armed men. He was found dead in the outskirts of Harare on Tuesday.

Masaya was campaigning for an opposition candidate in one of Harare’s high density areas ahead of the December 9 by-elections which have been triggered by the re-calling of Citizens for Change Coalitions members of parliament and councillors.

While the opposition and rights groups are going all out demanding answers and justice for Masaya, the sad reality is that the perpetrators will literally get away with murder as history has taught us they are never held accountable.

Earlier this month an opposition MP was kidnapped, tortured and found naked outside Harare. Despite his assailant being captured on camera, no arrest was ever made.

An attempt to forcibly take away CCC spokesperson, Promise Mkhwanzi during a live broadcast press conference after the August 23 elections was thwarted by fellow party members and journalists.

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Zanu PF and the authorities have often dismissed these incidents, claiming that they are stage managed and meant to tarnish the image of the government.

These cases of abductions and killings are always a poignant reminder of the disappearance of activist, Itai Dzamara who disappeared from the face of the earth in March 2015.

For those whose loved ones were killed and their bodies found, they at least had the comfort of burying them and hopefully healed with time.

But for the Dzamara family, they will never know what really happened and will live with the pain of unanswered questions.

Dzamara was a vocal critic of the late leader, Robert Mugabe. He was kidnapped from a barber shop in Harare eight years ago and to this day, no one knows exactly what happened to him, except of course those behind his disappearance.

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There have been claims that he was tortured, killed and his body thrown into a well of acid at the Special Air Services training camp in the capital.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International, Southern Defenders and Human Rights Watch have called on the authorities to immediately address the escalating cases of abductions, arbitrary arrests and detention, torture and killings of opposition and human rights defenders.

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