URGENT APPEAL - STOP THIS LAWLESS SOCIETY -
SITUATION IN KAROI
On the 15th September 2000, an open letter was sent to the Commissioner
Police Chihuri from the Karoi Community en masse (see copy below) which he
chose to ignore. Since this letter went out the Karoi farmers have
suffered the following abuse:-
CHIUWA FARM - Dutoit
The guard was chased from his home (between irrigated lands & borehole) by
war vets and told that everything that side belongs to them. Labour told
evacuate compounds and move into the barns as the compound now belongs to
them. Labour refused.
YAWANDA FARM - BB Johnson
3 x poachers that were arrested by farm guards and fined have had their
.303 weapons actually returned to them by the police! Barnabus Panadengu
(pseudo war vet) stated that he had hunting rights to the farms and if the
guards from Yawanda go to Laughing Hills they will be killed. Poaching is
rife on ALL the farms in Karoi right now, animals are being slaughtered by
poachers using spears, snares, guns and packs of dogs. The squatters
cannot actually eat one tenth of the dead beasts. Zebra, which they don't
eat at all are left in snares.
Report that Magunje Rural Councillors had met and resolved that they would
take over LAUGHING HILLS FARM , LANLORY FARM, ANSDELL FARM and PEVERIL
PLACE (See assault report - M.Roper) They decided to "just take the farms"
due to the fact that the rains are almost upon us...
BAOBAB FARM - N Mostert
A group of squatters want the labour out of their accommodation - they
were visited by a negotiating team - situation "sort of resolved".
GRAND PARADE - P Stidolph
War Vets stopped ridging and 3 foremen were assaulted. The labour reacted
and chased the squatters. Two squatters were citizen arrested due to the
fact that the police took 3 hours to react and even then only reacted when
they were threatened with the likelihood that a war vet being killed could
not be ruled out. The labour who made the citizens arrest have now been
charged with assault!
NASSAU RANCH - D Penny
Work stoppage. The threat to stop work on this farm is daily occurrence
the situation is reported to Mabundu each time. He has said that the land
belongs to the people and should farmers wish to farm they must get
LANLORY - Flight
3 foremen singled out and verbally abused for making so called false
reports. Flight was also verbally abused. Reported - no police reaction.
CHIUWA FARM - Dutoit
Visited by senior war vets and the police. Dutoit told that he has now to
request permission to farm on certain lands. Situation obviously
unresolved. Du Toits farm has deliberately been burnt out a few weekends
previously. Whilst the fire was being attended to by farmer and labour,
reaped maize stack was set on fire. Reported No investigation by police to
GLENELLEN FARM - Saywood
Squatters tried to stop ridging but were chased off by labour. Very near
civil strife breaking out.
NASSAU - D Penny
4 war vets from Chinhoyi office arrived and verbally abused Penny. They
were drunk and disorderly driving a beige Mazda first three digits being
451... They stopped irrigation on prepared lands and were to return for a
meeting with Penny and the labour.
BUFFALO DOWNS - W Nel
Wood cutting continuing and shacks being built. Continual harassment of
workers and farmer. War vet base camp situated on farm. Mabunda visits
camp regularly and issues orders to the warvets sometimes inciting them to
intimidate the farmer.
COLDOMA ESTATES - Spignese
Farmer prevented from collecting wood. War vets impounded 2 tractors but
released the trailers after farmer agreed to "ask permission" from war
before collecting his wood.
HELWIN FARM - Sheppard
Game scouts came into contact with 10 poachers who tried to ambush them.
One war vet threw a spear at a guard. The 2nd guard fired a shot. The
poachers had 18 dogs with them and the guards killed 2 and wounded 1.
Report made to ZRP. ( It must be noted that Mabunda has stopped the
presence of the National Parks game scouts being deployed in the area.)
CHIUWA FARM - Dutoit
Farmer stopped from unloading his irrigation pipes - war vets told them
that the lands were theirs. War vet GAPA MASUNDA commandeered a trailer,
the pipes rolled off the trailer and a fight then broke out. 4 pipes
damaged - Black Boots (Support Unit from Makuti) arrived, situation
temporarily resolved. Police investigated pipes being broken. War vets
stealing maize and on being asked by the guard what they were doing said
that it was none of his business and swore at him and told him to get
Another has since been arrested for stealing maize.
LANLORY FARM - A Flight
Farmer stopped on road on 21st and verbally abused badly by war vets. He
was told that he would be beaten for calling the police. JEFRED MUKWERERE
(Secretary for District Security) from the war vets office arrived to
with them - no war vets around at the time so a message left for them to
come to the Karoi office. Friday farmer abused again. Masses from the
communal lands moved in. (+- 70) and deliberately stared fishing on
dams. Saturday 2 war vets arrived and agreed that if farmer supplies
watercart and transport they will move to original area that they were on
in March. They intend to start planting maize. They asked farmer for jobs
as no money left! Farmer asked to grind maize for them. They refuse to
until government give them land and they are ready to start planting NOW
due to approaching rains.
HELWYN FARM - G Shepperd
Poaching rife - poachers had dogs. One poacher tried to spear the guard
the other guard fired a shot into the air. One guard killed two dogs and
wounded another. Snares are being recovered daily. If nothing is done the
future of wildlife in this country is finished. Reported to police but no
attempts made to stop the rampant killing.
BUFFALO DOWNS - W Nel
Inspector Mabunda and war vets arrived on the farm and threatened and
abused farmer and said that the farmer was inciting war.
ASSAULT REPORT ON M ROPER - PEVERILL PLACE
The owner of Peveril Farm, Karoi, Marshall Roper, was severely injured by
war vets this morning. A group of 12 war vets attempted to disrupt the
planting of tobacco on the farm. Mr Roper and the farm workers objected to
the stoppage and a war vet started pushing Roper around. Warvet Peter then
hit Mr Roper across the face with an open hand. War vet, William then
stepped forward and slashed Mr Roper across the bridge of his nose with
machete. Mr Roper collapsed to the ground and in fear of his life, fired 2
shots in the air to disperse the war vets. ZRP from Karoi responded and
Support Unit was deployed. Mr Roper lost a significant amount of blood but
is in a stable condition in a Harare hospital. Surgeons have attended to
his severe wounds (See picture attachment) Neighbouring farmers with
workers made citizens arrest of 4 war vets. The war vets were taken
immediately to the Police station in Karoi who them wanted to charge the
farmers with assault. Because of the growing number of protesters outside
the police station the farmers were released. It is now understood that 3
farm workers have been arrested in connection with the incident and it is
expected that all illegal occupiers will be evicted from Peveril Farm.
The Karoi Community angered by the continuing and blatant lawlessness in
their district, converged on the Karoi police Station at 12.00pm to
peacefully demonstrate their discontent. Approximately 60 farmers 40
business men and women hundreds of workers from the business district and
residents of Chikangwe Township and Karoi Village along with 2000 or so
farm workers, united to denounce the disregard for law and order.
Police Officer for the Karoi District, Supt. Mabunda, came under personal
attack for his role in supporting lawless activity in the area under his
jurisdiction. Warvet JEFRED MUKWERERE (Secretary for District Security
who is on five charges for assault) stood by Mabundas side and tried to
record the names of the farmers present and who from the crowd asked
questions. A cell phone communication was received that the deputy
Commissioner of Police Mpufu had ordered the support unit to use tear gas
and arrest the demonstrators. Before this happened the crowd dispersed but
threatened to continue with mass demonstrations if positive steps are not
taken to restore law and order.
For the record it must be remembered that Supereintendant Mabunda was
posted as District Police office late in 1999. He made it very clear to
farmers association that he had been sent to Karoi for two reasons. As the
official land commissioner for Zanu PF he had instructions to redistribute
the farm land and secondly to ensure a Zanu Pf victory no matter what it
took. Countless assaults, verbal abuse, threats and gross intimidation
ensued pre election. No report books were available in the police station
for a four week period and reports if taken were written on scraps of
paper. Very few charges were laid of the perpetrators of the violence.
incidents were directly incited by Mabunda and his hench men. Mabunda has
been quoted on numerous occasions of saying ...quote" my boys from the
bush..." It also must be noted that Mabunda was in command of the
Commissioner of Police, Chihuri during the "liberation struggle".
The following facts were presented to the Provincial Police Officer in
June 1999 for consideration of moving Mabunda from Karoi. These facts
sent to the Commissioner of police, Chihuri. No action was taken;-
Whenever Mabunda meets with the warvets they either salute him or come
attention. Dispol has been seen to salute Rex Jesus....who is in charge of
War Vets from various areas have refused to communicate with anyone but
Dispol - a clear case of showing that he is totally in charge of the War
When a work stoppage was reported to Dispol, he slammed the door of his
office reporting the matter and would not speak to anyone about the
situation. Only after considerable damage to the farm operation had been
done was he prepared to act and send a police detail out.
A number of assault cases have been reported at the charge office and to
date no Criminal Record has been opened. Reports from the Police are that
over 40 RRB's involving assaults have been cancelled. The only time
charges have been followed through is when two commercial farmers were
beaten and the press was involved. To date no investigation has been
carried out with respect to the assault charges made by another two
and they have now been threatened that if they do not withdraw their
charges they will be killed by trained killers.
Dispol was advised that if he should defuse Rex Jesus and attend to him as
he was potentially a very dangerous man and capable of carrying out
No action or investigation was carried out and murders were carried out in
When 3 people were arrested in Kariba, Dispol went to Kariba the next day
and had them released.....the following day the same 3 people were
Many police have told us that "their hands are tied and that they are not
allowed to carry out normal Police duties because we are under the
When the Police were told by Dispol to attend to a farmers beating, they
arrived at the scene 2 hours late. After enquiring why, it was learnt from
the Police details that their instruction was that they go via Magunje and
delay their arrival at the scene as long as possible.
During a very violent scene, Dispol said on 2 occasions that he would
attend in 15 minutes to the scene. This was never done and consequently
major damage was carried out to property.
Due to intimidation, labour have been unwilling to report cases of
In these situations reports have been made directly to Dispol. No
investigation have been followed up. It is very apparent that Dispol has
had no intention of carrying out the law.
Despite being aware that all weapons found in a farmers house, during a
totally unacceptable search ,were licensed, Dispol proceeded to state to
ZTV that an arms cache had been found.
Dispol, who is Chairman of the committee, is aware that money amounting to
$200 000.00 has been asked for in order to get farmers back on their farms
farming. He has chosen to ignore this and make no investigation or even
listen to the facts.
Dispol stood by and watched as War Vets broke ceilings during a weapons
search in a farmers home.
No receipt was given to a farmer for licensed weapons taken after a search
of a farmers house.
It is very clear that in all cases the War Vets side of all situation has
been favoured by Dispol and that he has a very apparent hate for farmers.
In all cases the Karoi Police have been very reluctant to assist if Dispol
has been in the Police station. Whenever he is not there, there is a
definite change in attitude by the police and they are willing to carry
In conclusion, be aware of the potentially volatile situation that could
result if Dispol is allowed to remain in this area. It is very clear that
he is intent on inflicting as much discomfort on the commercial and
business sector as possible in order to gain favour of the war Vets and ZP
Youth. He is abetting the spread of violence by criminal elements and in
almost all cases is unwilling to react to normal cases where law and order
If he is not moved there is a very possible danger that the farmers and
businesses in the area will be forced to suspend operations and evacuate
their premises in order to safe guard their lives.
The following letter is a copy of the open letter sent to the Commissioner
of Police, Zimbabwe, Commissioner Chihuri from the community of Karoi and
is self explanatory.
The purpose of the letter is to ensure that there is
no misunderstanding and that the Karoi Community will not except anything
less than what it is enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe. The
has been signed by over 1000 signatures and has been hand delivered to the
Please copy and forward this letter to all your contacts and addresses as
we, the community of Karoi, wish it to be known that the ball is now in
Commissioners court as the responsible authority.
18th September 2000
Commissioner of Police
Zimbabwe Republic Police
Police General Headquarters
JOSIAH CHINAMANO AVENUE
Box CY 34
OPEN LETTER - SITUATION IN KAROI
The community of Karoi hereby respectfully requests you to ensure that, as
from today law and order will be properly and legally upheld and
maintained. You and the Police force are charged with this duty in terms
of the Constitution of Zimbabwe as well as the duty of preserving internal
security. You, and members of the police force, on taking office, swear
carry our your duty without fear or favour. It is incumbent upon you to
fulfil that role. Continued failure to maintain law and order tarnishes
the reputation off the police force, something we feel sure you wish to
Each and every citizen is entitled to have his or her rights protected by
the police as guaranteed in our constitution. This is a fundamental
By ignoring its duty and failing to take steps to maintain law and order,
you and your force are aiding and abetting the violation of the rule of
law. We require the rule of law to be complied with at all times and in
Continual work stoppages, assaults, intimidating tactics, and blatant
unwillingness by the police to react to potentially violent situations,
prompted this open letter to be written.
The District Police Officer, Superintendent Mabunda, has over the last six
months acted in a manner which is counter productive and has virtually
ignored any directives or policy statements issued by your good offices
by Government. Details of these issues have been on numerous occasions
documented and presented to yourself for consideration and for appropriate
action to be taken through the recognised chain of command.
Further to this, all past agreements have been broken, ignored, undermined
and challenged by the war veterans and the local police leadership. They
obviously hold the opinion that agreements made are only for their
and well-being and may be changed by them to suit only themselves as and
when they feel like it, without regard for the third party or the
at large. In this respect we stress that the local police leadership not
only fails to maintain law and order or to obey directives or police
statements from you and Government but also has an attitude which brings
the police force into disrepute.
It is because of this unacceptable scenario and total disregard for
negotiated agreements that we, the community of Karoi, including farmers,
farm labourers, business persons, workers and residents will forthwith
to ensure that the Laws of the Country are complied with and upheld,
preferably with your co-operation and assistance.
Thus, the community of Karoi will in particular ensure that :-
Human rights are recognised and protected in every instance.
The police maintain Law and order as set out in the constitution
irrespective of the party policies. We quote that the police role is
preserve the internal security of and maintain law and order" in the
Every report made to the police station is correctly and efficiently dealt
with in a proper and professional manner as stated in the police charter.
No person or political party is above the law.
Assets, moveable and immovable, are protected under all circumstances.
Investments, such as land preparation and water reticulation schemes are
utilised by the investor fully and not interfered with under any
No work stoppages or interference, which put these investments at risk,
Persons in breach of the law be arrested and prosecuted accordingly. If
necessary the people of this community will institute citizen's arrests if
no reaction is taken by the regulating authority in due time.
The judicial system is utilised to take such action as may be necessary
against any policeman/woman, irrespective of rank, who refuses or fails to
carry our his/her legal and lawful obligation or duty to this community.
This letter is written, as we are most anxious to avert the following:-
Civil strife breaking out between farm labour forces and war veterans. The
growing concern amongst farm labourers that their livelihoods and jobs are
in jeopardy has sparked potentially violent clashes between the parties.
Further commercial businesses closing.
Further loss of production in the forthcoming crop.
Further labour redundancies.
We wish it to be known that we acknowledge and accept that there should be
a more equitable distribution of agricultural land. This should be
effected through an organised and regulated system as laid out in the 1998
This letter is written without reservation and will be forwarded to
relevant sources and interested parties in order that our concerns be
We exhort you and the local police authority immediately and at all times
to adhere to the rule of law, maintain law and order, prevent security
deteriorating and protect human rights. The consequences which may flow
from your failure to do so will be solely your responsibility.
In concluding we express the sincere hope that you will give serious
consideration to what has been written and will attend to our request as a
matter of urgency. A written reply by return setting out your intentions
and the steps you intend taking to restore and maintain law and order will