via Men of violence rewarded – The Zimbabwean 29.10.2015
On page five in this issue we carry the testimonies of several victims of the violence that was unleashed on members of the MDC around the 2008 elections.
The survivors of unspeakable brutality in Buhera have made statements which have been recorded for posterity. They make gruesome reading.
We publish them following an outcry from some of the victims who have identified the main perpetrators. Among the names of those accused is Colonel Morgan Mzilikazi, who has just been promoted by President Robert Mugabe to the rank of brigadier general.
The fact that Mugabe continues to promote soldiers with a known history of the most appalling human rights abuses is a clear testimony to Zanu (PF)’s unashamed propensity for violence.
Mzilikazi was an officer in the notorious Fifth Brigade which was responsible for many massacres in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces in the early 1980s. Following a world-wide outcry against the atrocities Fifth Brigade was supposedly disbanded.
The soldiers were transferred and absorbed into regular army and air force units. The current commander of the air force, Perence Shiri, was the commanding officer of Fifth Brigade.
Mzilikazi went to military intelligence, from where he continued to harass supporters of the opposition. His name featured prominently during the 2008 elections. Soon after Mugabe lost the presidential election to MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
During the re-run in June 2008, a reign of terror was unleashed across the country by Zanu (PF). Mzilikazi was one of the soldiers deployed in the rural areas in civilian clothing as “boys on leave”. His name was also mentioned when the MDC MP for Buhera south at the time, Naison Nemadziwa, was kidnapped in broad daylight outside the High Court in Harare.
Despite being named by the victims and eye witnesses in several murder, rape, abduction and torture cases he – and hundreds of others like him – have never been arrested prosecuted or disciplined in any way for their dastardly acts.
Instead, these men of violence have been rewarded by Mugabe, at the expense of the taxpayers – without even a slap on the wrist.What does this say about future elections in our beloved Zimbabwe?