Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

No answers 7 years after Itai Dzamara was abducted from barbershop

It has been seven years since journalist and political activist Itai Dzamara was abducted by suspected state security agents in Glen View, Harare, but efforts by his wife Sheffra Dorica, to ascertain his whereabouts from government have continued to hit a brick wall.

Dzamara’s wife wrote a petition to President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who assumed power in November 2017, demanding answers on her husband’s disappearance, but says she has not found joy.

“I have written to the government about Itai, but I have not been responded to. One day we will have answers,” she said.

The activist has not been seen since his disappearance on March 9, 2015, days after urging longtime leader Robert Mugabe to resign.

Itai Dzamara's wife Sheffra and his mother (centre) seen at the launch of the Itai Dzamara Trust in Harare this week
Itai Dzamara’s wife Sheffra and his mother (centre) seen at the launch of the Itai Dzamara Trust in Harare in 2015

He left behind his wife Sheffra Dorica and two children.

An activist of equal measure who shares the same background as Itai, journalist Hopewell Chin’ono on Wednesday launched a donation fund for Dzamara’s wife ” who is struggling on her own” because “He (Itai) was fighting for all of us.”

Dzamara left his home to get a haircut at the neighbourhood barbershop in Glen View, a high-density suburb in Harare and told his wife he would be back in a few minutes whom he asked to prepare breakfast.

He never returned.

Zimbabwe's politician Morgan Tsvangirai, second left, joins Sheffra Dzamara, second right, wife to activist Itai Dzamara who was allegedly abducted by State security agents holds a placard calling for his return, while taking part in a demonstration to commemorate a year since his disappearance, in Harare,Wednesday, March, 9, 2016. One of Zimbabwe's main opposition leaders Morgan Tsvangirai who joined the march and the Dzamara family members said that they hold Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe responsible for the abduction of the activist. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
The late MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai, second left, joins Sheffra Dzamara, second right, wife to activist Itai Dzamara who was allegedly abducted by State security agents holds a placard calling for his return, while taking part in a demonstration to commemorate a year since his disappearance, in Harare,Wednesday, March, 9, 2016. One of Zimbabwe’s main opposition leaders Morgan Tsvangirai who joined the march and the Dzamara family members said that they hold Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe responsible for the abduction of the activist. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)

Unidentified men outside the barbershop accused her 35-year-old husband of livestock theft, seized him and bundled him into one of their unmarked pick-up trucks before speeding off.

Dzamara was the founder of the Occupy Africa Unity Square movement which demanded the resignation of the late President Robert Mugabe. Mugabe died in 2019.

Two years ago, Sheffra sent a letter to Mnangagwa requesting him to shed light on her husband’s whereabouts and to ascertain what happened to him.

She has not had any answer.

“I don’t think they are still investigating,” she said. “It’s like they have forgotten about it … It’s like Itai never existed,” Sheffra recently told the media.

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