Three years for four Chipangano hoodlums

HARARE - Four Zanu PF-aligned Chipangano youth militia who assaulted a teenage boy have been slapped with a three-year jail term as the courts continue sending warning shots to hooligans.

John Zuze, Antonio Zuze, Alexander Kadzviti and Cosmos Muguzumbi will spend the next two years behind bars after Magistrate Fadzai Mthombeni suspended one year on condition of good behaviour.

The Chipangano members assaulted the 15-year-old boy at Mbare Netball Complex near Stodart Hall as he was coming from a church crusade in October 2011.  The gang accused the boy of being an MDC youth before attacking him.

According to the teenager’s mother, the boy lost two cellphones and $350 in the attack.

The boy sustained head injuries, bleeding from the ear and facial bruises as a result of the attack, according to doctors. The incarceration of the four follows that of Modcay Svosvera, a Zanu PF supporter who unleashed violence at the funeral wake of political and human rights activist Vimbai Mbisva.

Svosvera, a 29-year-old, was jailed for four and half years after he was convicted on public violence charges.

Human rights defenders say the imprisonment of political hoodlums such as Svosvera and the Chipangano crew is a positive sign which should become a pattern whenever perpetrators of violence are identified as the country heads for a referendum on a new constitution and a watershed election most likely in the first half of the year.

Driven by political hate, Svosvera did not only break the law when he attacked mourners at the grassroots campaigner’s funeral wake but also showed a disturbingly inhuman side by failing to respect such a gathering.

Svosvera pursued Mbisva in death when he led a group of hooligans to attack mourners, including the activist’s mother at the funeral wake.

The funeral was being held in Sunningdale.

Throughout his struggle, Mbisva encountered harassment from State security agents and politicians who were against his work.

But, it was the callous nature with which Svosvera’s gang, suspected to be aligned to Zanu PF, acted which left many in anger. — Legal Monitor

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