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Tapiwa Matuwi: Dad’s pain after son ‘vanished without a trace’

The father of a missing hip hop artist has spoken of his family’s heartbreak after his son “vanished” without a trace on a busy street in Swansea (UK). Tapiwa Matuwi, 21, was last seen on CCTV near Swansea Marina at about 07:00 GMT on 7 February 2019.

Tapiwa Matuwi's parents have put up thousands of posters in their search for him
Tapiwa Matuwi’s parents have put up thousands of posters in their search for him

He had been out with friends at Fiction nightclub on the city’s Wind Street.

His father Munyaradzi Zvada said he could not understand how no-one could have seen him on the busy street, while police have renewed their appeal.

“It is like our son just vanished, and no-one seems to know anything,” he said. “We are scarred forever, we have an important part of our family missing.”

The IT graduate, known as Tapi to his friends, was spotted on CCTV at Castle Gardens, the St Davids student accommodation and finally near the marina on the night he disappeared.

But since then no evidence has been found, and despite numerous appeals no-one has contacted the police or family with any information about what happened, Mr Zvada said.

“It is a case that we are stuck, there are no leads, you can only imagine,” he said.

“There is the CCTV, and then no information, it is like a wild goose chase.

“I know somebody knows something or saw something, but no-one is saying anything.”

Tapiwa Matuwi's parents have put up thousands of posters in their search for him
Tapiwa Matuwi’s parents have put up thousands of posters in their search for him

Mr Zvada said he and his wife Nyengeterai Matuwi-Zvada and friends had put up about 10,000 posters around the area searching for their son, a University of Wales Trinity Saint David graduate.

They also held a concert to raise money and publicity.

“We spent a lot of time walking around speaking to people,” he said.

“It is a busy area, people are always walking their dogs, somebody out there knows something, why would they withhold that information?”.

Mr Zvada, from Llansamlet in the city, said he and his family would not give up hope and knew their son would want them to keep trying to find out what had happened.

“He was a very lovely kid, he was just a kind and lovely person, he brought a lot of joy,” he said.

“We had a lot of good times as a family, we went through Christmas and birthdays without him, it has been terrible, you don’t know where to go or what to do.”

Mr Zvada said that it had been especially hard for Tapi’s 10-year-old sister as the two of them were close, listening to music and spending a lot of time together.

Mr Zvada said he and his wife Nyengetereya Matuwi-Zvada and friends had put up about 10,000 posters around the area searching for their son, a University of Wales Trinity Saint David graduate.
Mr Zvada said he and his wife Nyengetereya Matuwi-Zvada and friends had put up about 10,000 posters around the area searching for their son, a University of Wales Trinity Saint David graduate.

Tapi’s family had considered hiring a private investigator, but said they were waiting for the police to finish their investigations before exploring that avenue again.

“We do not want him to become another statistic,” said Mr Zvada, who said they would be spending time as a family thinking about their son on the anniversary of his disappearance and try to raise publicity.

“We are just going to try whatever we can, it might jiggle someone’s memory.

“Wherever he is, that is the approach he would want us to take, to be doing whatever we can. We have to remain positive.

“We want some kind of closure, that is what we are looking for as a family.”

Tapi is about 6ft, slim with black hair and was wearing a red jacket with Bieber written in white on the back when he disappeared.

Det Insp Carl Price said: “We continue to investigate Tapi’s disappearance and one year on we need your help to give his family the answers they desperately need.

“We have spoken to a number of witnesses but if anyone has any information we would ask them to contact us, even if you do not think it’s important.” BBC News

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