Tuesday, 17 September 2019


By David Coltart
The Herald has fallen into the ZANUPF propaganda line that the disappearance of Dr Peter Magombeyi is “fake” and deliberately engineered by the opposition to embarrass Mnangagwa.

Aside from the fact that there have been some 51 disappearances this year and not one prosecution, the question must be asked what other things have happened this year which are fake and solely contrived to embarrass Mnangagwa? Was the gunning down of some 17 civilians by the military in January fake or done by pseudo operators solely to embarrass Mnangagwa? Are the revelations of billions stolen from Command Agriculture funds fake and also designed to embarrass?

As absurd as the propaganda line is, it remains profoundly sinister. For not only does it seek to shift the blame for these disappearances, but it also seeks to give the regime even greater cover going forward. Once the regime believes it has sown this falsehood in the minds of people and in particular the international community, it wil then think it has licence to disappear even more people with impunity- because it can then just blame it on the opposition, no matter how outlandish it may appear.

This is not be the first time ZANUPF and Mr Mnangagwa has done this. In the 1980s all sorts of criminal acts were blamed on ZAPU and dissidents. History now shows that many of these criminal acts, if not most, were committed by agent provocateurs acting under the directions of the ZANUPF government.

The MDC and civic organizations have repeatedly declared their commitment to the use of non violent, lawful and constitutional measures in seeking to have the Constitution of Zimbabwe respected by the ZANUPF regime. Despite ZANUPF’s unrelenting efforts to portray the opposition as violent it has failed because there isn’t a shred of evidence that the opposition is prepared to use illegal and violent methods to achieve its goals.

The recent spate of abductions must be seen in this light. ZANUPF is prepared to go to the lengths it has because of its current paranoia. Not only does this tactic of disappearing people have a chilling effect on activists angry with ZANUPF’s policies, but ZANUPF appears to think that it may provide them with another pretext to crack down on the opposition.

The international community must be alive to these machinations and to the historical record. The latter shows that ZANUPF is an entity which has systematically disappeared its opponents for 4 decades - and which has sought to blame those same disappearances on the opposition itself. It has resorted to this again because it has never been held to account for its past actions. It is critically important that the international community let ZANUPF know that it will not look the other way this time round. Via Facebook


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