MDC Alliance activists in Bulawayo have narrated hair-raising tales of torture at the hands of suspected State agents after they were allegedly abducted from their homes for planning the failed 31 July protests.
Transform Zimbabwe leader Jacob Ngarivhume, who was the main organiser of the anti-corruption protests, was arrested on charges of plotting to overthrow President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government on the eve of the planned demonstrations and later thrown into Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison.
A number of political activists and journalists fled their homes when it became apparent that State agents would descend heavily upon them.
MDC Alliance spokesperson in Bulawayo, Swithren Chirowodza said four activists, Takunda Madzana (MDC Alliance youth secretary for cadre-ship development), Otillia Sibanda (a former party official), Nyasha Masundire (a youth chairman) and Michael Mubasa (a senior MDC Alliance official), were abducted and experienced gruesome torture at the hands of their captors. Said Chirowodza:
On July 26, 2020, between 11 pm and 12 midnight, Madzana was abducted from his Magwegwe home by suspected state security agents and later dumped after horrendous torture, which among other diabolic acts included being immersed in and out of a pool of water. They also applied electric shocks on his feet.
The suspected state security agents also took US$50 from Madzana’s house.
Sibanda was abducted from her house in Bulawayo’s Sizinda Township between 7 and 8 am on July 29, 2020.
Assailants drove a Toyota Platz and a Honda Fit. She was tortured and later dumped along Plumtree Road near Mbokodo butchery…
Following reports of egregious human rights violations in the country, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa sent three envoys to Harare to engage the government and other stakeholders.
However, the envoys were blocked from meeting opposition political parties, churches and civil society organisations, with Harare insisting that there was no crisis in the country.