Zimbabwe’s biggest opposition party, Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) led by Nelson Chamisa, has reported that its former Member of Parliament (MP) for Mabvuku-Tafara, James Chidhakwa, was abducted and subjected to torture. In a statement seen by Pindula News, the party confirmed that Chidhakwa is currently receiving medical treatment at a local hospital. Read the statement:
"The regime in Harare is aware that it did not win the recently concluded flawed, sham, disorganized, and shambolic elections. That is why it is behaving like a terrorist organization, abducting and torturing our innocent members. We condemn this behavior in the strongest terms.
We have received a report that our change champion, Hon Chidhakwa, was abducted, tortured, injected with an unknown substance, and subsequently dumped in Acturus at midnight by suspected state agents. His dreadlocks were shaved off using a sharp object. He is currently at a local hospital. The regime in Harare continues to unleash violence and launch attacks against our members. This behavior must STOP."
The party’s deputy spokesperson, Gift Ostallos Siziba, echoed the report saying Chidhakwa was abducted and severely assaulted by unknown individuals. He said Chidhakwa was found dumped in Acturus, injured and injected with an unknown substance. He sustained deep cuts and is currently hospitalised.
Some people find the timing of these abductions suspicious, as they often occur during significant international events, such as the upcoming SADC’s Anti-Sanctions Day on 25 October. One commentator said:
"What a coincidence. Abduction a day before Zimbabwe anti sanctions day to be observed by the international community. I smell a rat."
Some people expressed disappointment in the opposition leadership for not taking action against the alleged attackers. A commentator criticised their repetitive statements condemning the attacks, stating that mere tweets won’t deter “ZANU PF thugs”. The commentator suggested that the opposition should take decisive action, similar to what their predecessors did against the oppressive Smith regime. Otherwise, the situation will remain unchanged. Another one said:
"Are you trying to tell us that since 2000 all opposition supporters are like sheep waiting to be slaughtered? Why are its shepherds always crying but not finding means to protect their sheep? This clearly shows that the shepherds are cowards and sheep are on their own."
There have been numerous cases of government critics, opposition members, human rights defenders, and journalists being abducted. The alleged victims believe that state security agents are responsible for these kidnappings and acts of torture. However, the government denies these allegations, claiming that they are false and intended to tarnish its reputation.