Zim must find Dzamara: EU Parly

HARARE – The European Parliament has backed a motion by Zimbabwean High Court judge Justice David Mangota calling for Zimbabwean human rights activist Itai Dzarana to be found immediately.

Although the resolution repeated language previously adopted by the EU bloc, it could stoke tensions with Zimbabwe, which insists it is already doing everything in its power to find him.

Dzamara, 35, a maverick journalist leading the pro-democracy pressure group “Occupy Africa Unity Square” movement demanding that President Robert Mugabe resigns, was kidnapped by five armed men from a barber shop in a working class suburb of Harare over 60 days ago and shoved into an unmarked truck near his home in the capital, according to his barber.

He has not ben seen since.

“MEPs (Members of the European Parliamant) strongly condemn the forced disappearance of human rights defender Itai Dzamara and urge the government of Zimbabwe to comply fully with the High Court order directing it to search for him and thus take all necessary measures to find him,” the bloc said in a statement.

“They express concerns at the reports by human rights organisations of increasing political violence and other human rights abuses and call for concerted action by the international community.”

The resolution by the 28-nation EU deplored the absence of a strong and enforceable human rights clause in the interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) and called on the EU delegation in Harare “to continue to offer its assistance to Zimbabwe in order to improve the human rights situation”.

The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights successfully filed a harbeas corpus application at the High Court, with Justice Mangota ordering  Home Affairs minister Kembo Mohadi, police commissioner-general Augustine Chihuri, Central Intelligence Organisation director-general Happyton Bonyongwe and the State Security minister — listed as respondents in the application alleging State security agents had masterminded the abduction of Dzamara — find him.

All the respondents denied knowledge of Dzamara’s whereabouts during the hearing, but were ordered by the court “to do all things necessary to determine his whereabouts including advertising within 12 hours of the granting of the court order on all State media including all radio stations, ZTV, the (State-run) Herald and the Chronicle newspapers.”

The High Court judge also directed that a team of police detectives be deployed to work closely with Dzamara’s legal practitioners to search for him “at all such places as may be within their jurisdiction in terms of the law and report progress of such search to the Registrar of the High Court by 1600 hours every Friday fortnightly until his whereabouts have been determined.”

Police have also issued a statement saying they had opened investigations.

“The Zimbabwe Republic Police is appealing for information on the whereabouts of Itai Peace Kadiki Dzamara aged 35 years,” the police statement said.

“Anyone with information, please contact Officer Commanding Police (Law and Order Division), Assistant Commissioner Makedenge on (04) 251505 or the Officer in Charge CID (Criminal Investigations Department) Law and Order Harare.” 

Describing the abduction as “barbaric”, Zimbabwe Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa told Parliament last month he could not admit that Dzamara was arrested or is in their custody, raising grave concerns for his safety.

He said the police  were searching for him.

Responding to a question by Stephen Sackur on BBC’s HARDtalk on Monday about the abduction, Information minister Jonathan Moyo claimed there was nothing unusual about Dzamara’s disappearance, suggesting that even in the UK, people disappear without a trace.

The United States and European Union have called for his immediate release, and implored authorities to immediately investigate the disappearance.

The US Embassy in Harare said “if he is being held in State custody, it is vital that his fundamental human rights and freedoms as guaranteed by Zimbabwe’s Constitution be honoured,” while the EU Delegation here said the government should “take all necessary measures to ascertain Mr Dzamara’s whereabouts, safeguard his wellbeing and accord him the full protection of the law.”

Comments (11)

Typically Zanu pf and their evil security apparatus ignore such demands or requests. Although the Zanu criminal idiots believe they can act with impunity, in due time they will find that they will all eventually be held accountable for their multiple heinous crimes. Notice how quiet all of the Charlatan Prophets are ! The UN and Interpol should be called in – they can start by examining the CIO Torture camp and by putting Augustine Chihuri's gonads in a vice grip to get the whole truth.

Eldardo Mutasa - 23 May 2015

The thugs that are Zanu Pf always engage in some stupid defiant bravado. They labor under the mistaken and dangerous notion that they can stand up and force the controllers of international capital, to do their bidding. They are quick to tell people to go hang and act as if they are better than everybody else, as if they know all the answers; yet they are presiding over a stinking mess...a smell so vile and pervasive it ought to make them (its authors) puke. But no. Not Zanu Pf wanotaura sewakasika munhu...Kasukuwere bragging about being a political thug is a very recent example. They will not accept responsibility for anything and the forced disappearance of Dzamara will not be any different. However, nerimwe zuva gava richadambura musungo!!

farai - 23 May 2015

Zanu has the insatiable penchant to invite problems on themselves and when EU, America condemns them they want to go rabid and term it a regime change agenda. At this rate Dzamara is still fighting a lone battle for Zimbabweans wherever he is dead or alive. Zanu has to live with the realities of a continuation of sanctions because of his kidnapping. #Bring_back_Dzamara!

Nyimo - 23 May 2015

In my view fellow Zimbabweans, we should now be straight to the point on Itai's disappearance. The illegitimate government of Zimbabwe, under the leadership of robert mugabe, abducted Itai Dzamara. He had become a thorn in the flesh for this mafia gang. Take heed of mnangagwa 's statement " I am a trained killer" As sure as the sun rises from east and sets down to the west, answers to Itai's disappearance lie in that statement.

jackson - 24 May 2015

Throughout all the misery, carnage and suffering. that Zanu pf has caused in Zimbabwe for decades what is truly amazing is that so called humanitarians (purported defenders of human rights) continuously aid and abet Mugabe's despotic regime. They claim that inter-governmental relations are improving yet Zanu pf's intransigence and lunacy is steadily worsening. These supposed Western do-gooders claim that they are helping ordinary Zimbabweans whilst the reality is they are wilfully sponsoring the state criminal enterprises and their foot-soldiers. Now they are about to infuse funds directly into Chinamas's coffers without any accountability and transparency (as usual). Clearly the last people that they will ever support are actually the direct and indirect victims of Zanu pf's tyranny. That these borderline moronic Western governments cooperate with the Mugabe's Nazi styled racial policies and plundering defies proper morality, logic and common sense. The International Criminal Court need a new focus and chapter to prosecute the sponsors of tyrannical regimes. A lot of naïve Western mentally deficient cretins who have actively collaborated with Zanu pf authoritarian regime will naturally be scheduled for trial and accountability.

Chrispen Makedenge - 24 May 2015

Well done EU Parliament. We also waiting for your ruling on America's failure for more than 50 years to arrest whoever killed the Kennedys.

grey mukondo - 24 May 2015

Zvakaoma zvinoitwa ne Zanu. Nothing lasts forever

Bull Ant - 24 May 2015

The police are really not functioning on this one. This is an activist anti- government journalist who lives of economic sabotage. There is a need to arrest those who call themselves human rights lawyers and jail them until they tell where the man is. If they talker a case to court they must have evidence to support who took him, logically if you lock them all up he will appear again.

john - 25 May 2015

we are the only country in the world where lawyers and journalists who are anti-government are referred to as human rights personal instead of the terrorists that they are. lawyers asc members of the law society are supposed to promote the law - they now ignore it and demonstrate against it and should face expulsion from the body and the law reducing them to activists and terrorists that they are

john - 25 May 2015

One wonders why the EU parliament is concerned about a missing idiot in this part of the world. It just shows the whole scenario is out of their creation. The puppet called Dzamara is a nonentity in the country let alone the region. Not any single right thinking Zimbabwean loses sleep over this "missing" idiot.

reason - 26 May 2015

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