State orders inquest into Midzi's death

HARARE – The State has ordered a probe into the death of former Cabinet minister and diplomat Amos Midzi who was found dead in the back of his car two years ago at his Marirangwe farm, a few kilometres outside the capital.

Midzi was suspected to have taken his own life although his family members at the time said he had not left a suicide note and could not rule out foul play.

Yesterday, prosecutor Linda Gadzikwa gave the State’s notice of opening the inquest to determine how the former minister died — while disclosing that they were yet to get Midzi’s relatives to commence proceedings.

Harare magistrate Barbra Chimboza, who was presented with the notice, said a date was going to be announced for the inquest.

In the court record, the State said Midzi left his Mt Pleasant residence on June 8, 2015 and drove to his farm in Beatrice where he attended to tobacco bales which were to be transported to Tobacco Sales Floor in Harare before driving off presumably to his residence around 11pm and that was the last time he was seen alive.

Midzi, who was a top ally of former vice president Joice Mujuru, was found dead in his car a week after being suspended from President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF for allegedly plotting against the nonagenarian.

Villagers found the body of Midzi, who was also former Zanu PF Harare provincial chairperson, in his vehicle at his farm in Marirangwe near Harare.

The politician was in the backseat of his SUV, with his legs stretched between the front seats.

Some blue sleeping pills were found in the vehicle.

Family spokesperson Stanley Midzi said they did not know whether he took the drugs under duress or it was out of his own free will.

“He did not leave a suicide note,” the younger Midzi told the Daily News then.

Stanley, however, said he was aware that his brother was suffering from sleeping disorders. He said the disorder started after Midzi was unceremoniously ostracised from Zanu PF.

“You know how the politics of the party have been going on and how he was booted out,” he said.

“For someone who had a passion for politics and someone who started politics in high school at Fletcher High School in Gweru, politics was his life and I know that he was deeply hurt with everything that happened to him.”

Born July 4, 1952, Midzi was part of the 89 party officials suspended from Zanu PF following the brutal purges of Mujuru and senior officials linked to her — who included former secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa and the party’s spokesperson Rugare Gumbo — on untested charges of seeking to topple Mugabe.

He was slapped with a five-year suspension for being part of the so-called “Gamatox camp” allegedly fronted by Mujuru — which was accused of trying to dislodge the increasingly frail Zanu PF leader at the 2014 party congress.

Midzi began his political career in the late 70s and served as deputy minister from 1982, holding several ministerial portfolios after launching his political career.

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