‘Tortured CCC activists did not disclose information on our plans’ – Chamisa
Opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa said party members Womberaiishe Nhende and Sanele Mukhuhlani who were allegedly kidnapped and tortured by suspected Zanu-PF thugs and State security agents had no information about their leader’s plan following his decision to dispute the outcome of the harmonised general elections held two weeks ago.
Nhende, the elected Councilor for Glen Norah Ward 27 in Harare and his friend were abducted and tortured before being dumped on the outskirts of Harare during the night of 2 September.
Their lawyers lawyers, Doug Coltart and Tapiwa Muchineripi were charged with contravening Section 184 of the Criminal Code by allegedly preventing police from interviewing their clients. They were released on bail after spending the night in police custody.
Today, President @nelsonchamisa visited the youth task force members, @Cde_Wombe and Sanele at a local hospital in Harare. They were abducted and tortured by regime in Harare because they chose CCC. A post election Zimbabwe is engulfed in a cloud of illegitimacy and uncertainty.… pic.twitter.com/CXJx5Jn6O1
— Gift Ostallos Siziba (@Cde_Ostallos) September 5, 2023
In an interview with NewsDay, Chamisa said the perpetrators of torture were demanding information from the victims on the party’s next move after rejecting last month’s election results.
“We are going to take this matter up with the relevant authorities, the police to make sure that investigations are done and we are going to raise this issue internationally and with the region to say this is unacceptable,” Chamisa said.
“My deputy chief election agent, Coltart, a lawyer, and his colleague are being victimised. Not them alone, but scores of citizens are being victimised,” Chamisa said.
“We do not expect torture. People have just voted. It was a disputed election, a fraud election and beyond that you torture people for what reason?
“They (victims) reiterated to me the circumstances under which they were abducted. It is very unfortunate.
“I am extremely concerned that people are being subjected to torture and terror on account of politics.
“This is a serious issue. The reason they were tortured is they had said they didn’t have information on what I am doing.
“I do not do things nicodemously or undercover. What we do, we do openly peacefully and constitutionally. And we have rights, we will exercise those rights.”
Mnangagwa controversially won the plebiscite with 52,6% against Chamisa’s 44%. The electoral process was however, discredited by the regional and international observers over massive irregularities.
Chamisa said Mnangagwa was facing backlash because he did not win the presidential race.
“The security and protection of the citizens is a big issue, but what is clear is that Mr Mnangagwa does not have the consent of the people,” Chamisa said.
“You don’t use force where there is love. You don’t use coercion where you have persuaded; there is a clear position that we won this flawed election resoundingly at all levels, that is why there is backlash.”