Missing activist family writes petition to Mugabe, threatens massive protests

2015-08-25 15:09
Itai Dzamara. (Facebook)

Itai Dzamara. (Facebook)

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Harare – Missing Zimbabwean human rights activist Itai Dzamara’s family has reportedly petitioned President Robert Mugabe, demanding that the veteran leader make an order for his release.

Dzamara, a father of two, was abducted by five men who stormed a barbershop in Glenview, Harare, while he was having a haircut on March 9.

The former journalist had been staging protests in Harare's Africa Unity Square calling on Mugabe to step down.

According to News Day, Dzamara’s family threatened mass protests within a week if Mugabe ignored the petition.

"In the event that you choose to ignore my demand and request, I shall engage all progressive Zimbabweans within a week and protest in various ways against that in a civil, peaceful and resolute manner as provided for within the Constitution," Dzamara's brother, Patson wrote.

Veteran leader's attention

Patson said it did not make logical sense that his brother could go missing for more than 160 days without a trace in a nation that was not at war.

Patson also expressed concern over the stance taken by Mugabe over the whole issue, saying the nonagenarian had allowed Dzamara's disappearance to "go unnoticed and unquestioned".

Mugabe's spokesperson, George Charamba, made headlines in July when he reportedly said Dzamara’s disappearance did not deserve the veteran leader’s attention.

"I dismiss calls for the president to pronounce himself on the matter as pre-eminently political and thus not worthy of his attention. People go missing here and elsewhere in the world," Charamba was quoted as saying.

Charamba said at the time that it was the responsibility of the investigating arms of government to take a leading role in establishing the missing activist's whereabouts.

Mugabe’s government insisted last week that it did not have answers regarding what  happened to Dzamara, fending off accusations the authorities masterminded his disappearance.

Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa claimed state security agents were looking for Dzamara.

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) led by Morgan Tsvangirai maintained that Mugabe's government was behind Dzamara's abduction.

Read more on:    mdc  |  emmerson mnangagwa  |  morgan tsvangirai  |  george charamba  |  itai dzamara  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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