EXILED secessionist Matabeleland Liberation Organisation (MLO) leader, Paul Siwela could be treading on thin ice, after issuing threats to assemble a 30 000-men militia to defend the region from a possible government-sanctioned second Gukurahundi massacre, remarks that could be seen as treasonous.
Source: Siwela plans setting up militia – NewsDay Zimbabwe January 5, 2017
BY SILAS NKALA
Siwela, who skipped the country in 2013 while facing a treason charge, posted a message on his Facebook page on Tuesday intimating that another Gukurahundi massacre was imminent given the political tensions in the country.
“The fact that they (State security agents) are allowed to walk the streets and run the show while their hands are dripping with blood of innocent Matabele civilians gives them the licence and greenlight to continually intimidate, molest, torture and kill innocent people,” he said.
“When the lives of the people of Matabeleland, who have gone through genocide, marginalisation, tribal segregation and domination are in danger, it is the duty of MLO supreme council, together with the oppressed people of Matabeleland, to assemble 30 000 men strong Matabeleland defence forces.
“All patriotic citizens of Matabeleland must answer to this clarion call. Are you committed and ready?”
Siwela, a former presidential election candidate, claimed he had to flee for his life following assassination threats from State security agents.
Just before his departure, Siwela, on August 24, 2013, wrote to Bulawayo High Court judge, Justice Nicholas Ndou, saying he was not running away from the treason charges, but feared for his life.
His co-accused Charles Thomas and John Gazi were later acquitted of the treason charge.
The three were being accused of plotting to dislodge President Robert Mugabe’s government through unconstitutional means.
Siwela’s whereabouts have remained unknown, although there are speculative reports he could be hiding in Sweden or South Africa.
He often issues statements using social media.
More than 20 000 people were reportedly killed by the Fifth Brigade during the Gukurahundi era in the early 1980s, as the Zanu PF government cracked down on suspected PF Zapu dissidents.