Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front youth leader Pupurai Togarepi today said the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change and the United States embassy in Harare were responsible for recent abductions of activists.
The latest victim is Peter Magombeyi of the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association who disappeared on Saturday and has not been heard of since causing local, regional and international outrage.
The abductions have been blamed on State agents.
Writing in the State-controlled Herald today, Togarepi said: “The quest for power should never ever replace our humanness and the inherent spirit of Ubuntu that is the hallmark of our people, either in their deeds or spirit.
“Such virtues that are found in Zimbabwe should never be supplanted by self-seeking politicians or power-hungry individuals who pander to the whims and caprices of our erstwhile colonisers.”
He said it was surprising that the opposition and some embassies were celebrating the disappearance of Magombeyi.
“The idea is to damage the reputation of our country, the people of Zimbabwe and also the ruling party ZANU-PF,” he said.
“As the ZANU-PF Youth League, we hope that Peter is safe and whoever has him, which we dare say is the MDC-A or one of the ever scheming embassies in particular the US embassy, return him to his family, friends, workmates and indeed the nation at large safe and sound with no injuries, and indeed to tell the real story of who took him.”
Togarepi said the MDC, more than anyone else stood to benefit from Magombeyi’s disappearance and should tell the nation where he is.
He posed a series of questions:
- It begs answers, why would ZANU-PF abduct a doctor who serves the people and saves life?
- Why would the ZANU-PF Government shoot itself in the foot by carrying out abductions when the message is engagement?
- Why would the ZANU-PF Government seek to bring unnecessary negative publicity when the President is due to be at the United Nations in New York, marketing brand Zimbabwe?
- And indeed why would we score an own goal by carrying such dastardly acts when a special UN envoy is on our soil assessing our human rights record?
“The simple answer to the above is that ZANU-PF, as the governing party, would never under the sun, engage or allow such acts of banditry which tarnishes the image we are working around the clock to spruce and put in good stead after decades of isolation, to take place.
“Indeed, common sense shows that there are elements in this country hell bent on derailing the progress that ZANU-PF is making, there is a third and sinister hand trying to rock the boat and cause maximum damage to our re-engagement efforts, these shenanigans, which I am afraid, have the fingerprints of the country’s clumsy opposition party masquerades and their puppeteers all over, are meant to deliver the killer punch and return the country to a pariah State that is unsafe, inhabitable, and perpetually ostracised from the rest of the world. The MDC-A and some embassies are no doubt the third force.
“We know the MDC-A has trained militias, we also know they have torture houses which they lie are safe houses, and we also know that the MDC-A, that consorts with nations which imposed sanctions on us to blunt our recovery prospects, want to inflict maximum damage by fair or foul means,” he said.
What is interesting, however, is that ZANU-PF held its politburo meeting yesterday where Togarepi sits as the youth representative.
The party has been disturbed by the outcry following Magombeyi’s disappearance as a United Nations rapporteur is in the country and President Emmerson Mnangagwa is due to attend the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York.