As the Citizens’ Manifesto, we are outraged by the heavy-handed manner in which the state responded to the Wednesday 13 May demonstration by the MDC Youth Assembly. We hold that Citizens regardless of their political affiliation have a sacrosanct right to express their grievances. We condemn in the strongest terms the abduction and torture of three female leaders of the MDC Youth Assembly namely, Harare West Member of Parliament, Hon. Joanna Mamombe, Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova. The trio went missing for almost two days, after being reported as taken into police custody at Harare Central Police Station. They were only found two days later heavily brutalized and left for dead. This sadistic act of state sponsored violence against defenseless citizens is totally reprehensible and an indictment on the Mnangagwa administration.
Worse still, this case is not isolated as many political and civil society activists have been previously subjected to the same treatment across the country with total impunity. Since Zimbabwe’s independence, the government has not done anything to resolve enforced disappearances and serious violations of human rights. All people of good conscience across the nation and worldwide must condemn the continued abuse of human rights by the ZANU PF government and demand an end to this impunity.
We call on the state to come clean on these latest abductions and for the perpetrators to be brought to book. In the case of failing to explain this sad incident and the police’s conflictingstatements on the issue, the Police Commissioner-General, Godwin Matanga must resign! We call on the government to create peaceful means of responding to protests by citizens. This case highlights the importance and urgent need for an inclusive national dialogue with all important stakeholders to discuss and settle once and for all, all the serious issues bedeviling our nation.
We extend our utmost solidarity to the trio, and we pray and hope for their speedy recovery.