Back to Top

Released abductees tell their story

Fani Tembo, Lloyd Tarumbwa, and Mrs Terry MusonaMDC Press Release --Three MDC activists who were part of over 40 MDC activists abducted last October were released from custody last week after spending more than four months in illegal detention.

Fani Tembo, Lloyd Tarumbwa and Mrs. Terry Musona were abducted in pre dawn raids from their homes between 30 and 31 October 2008 in Banket, Mashonaland West province.

The three are part of over 40 MDC and civil society activists who were abducted on trumped up charges of banditry and recruiting MDC youths for terrorism training in neighbouring Botswana in an effort to topple the Zanu PF government.

According to Tembo, Tarumbwa and Musona they were severely tortured and subjected to inhumane treatment by State security agents during their illegal detention in a bid to force them to confess to the false charges.

Tembo is a Councillor for Ward 22, Zvimba South and MDC district organizing secretary while Tarumbwa is a co-ordinator for Ward 22 and Musona is the Mashonaland West provinces’ vice secretary.

“We were tortured, denied food and medical attention during our entire period of illegal detention,” said Musona who is now receiving medical attention following the gruesome torture.

Although they could not positively identify the perpetrators, all the three managed to implicate one Chief Superintendent Magwenzi as the leader of the torturers.

“Most of the days we were forced to sleep on a cold floor, hungry and blind folded,” she said.

“We had one meal a day, which consisted handful of sadza and a very tiny piece of meat,” said Tembo.

The abductees said they were constantly moved from house to house in order for them not to detect where they were being kept during their four-month isolation.

“The windows were always shut and curtains drawn. However, we knew that it was in Harare and the only place we managed to identify was the Police Golf Club as we were taken there for regular interrogations and we had our blinds taken off,” said Tarumbwa.

The three would plead on several occasions for them to be brought to court so that if they had committed any crimes they would be charged but this never happened.

“In fact when we told the persecutors that we wanted access to a lawyer or to be brought before the courts we were severely beaten, threatened with death and denied food for up to two days,” said Tarumbwa.

They were released last week without any charges pressed against them but were only forced again to sign affidavits. They were taken away quietly at night and dumped some kilometres outside Banket. They had to complete the rest of the journey on foot.

However, despite the severe ill-treatment that they went through, the three vowed to The Changing Times Online that they would remain true cadres of the democratic struggle.

At least 30 of the detainees including Zimbabwe Peace Projects (ZPP) director Jestina Mukoko and Concillia Chinanzvavana, the MDC Women’s Assembly Mashonaland West provincial chairperson were brought before the courts and remanded in custody at Chikurubi Maximum and Harare Remand Prisons.

Among the abducted MDC activists was a two year old boy Nigel Mutemagawo who was abducted with his parents Violet Mupfuranhehwe and Collen Mutemagawo.

However, despite repeated denials by the MDC, the Botswana government and South African President Kgalema Motlanthe that these were flimsy charges, the Zanu PF government continued to illegally detain and torture the abductees.

Zanu PF also refused to comply with numerous court orders for the accused to be released or to receive proper treatment from hospitals following reports of excessive torture at the hands of State security agents.

The MDC is also worried about the whereabouts of seven other MDC activities that were abducted last year and are still missing.

These are Gwenzi Kahiya – abducted 29 October 2008 in Zvimba, Ephraim Mabeka – abducted 10 December 2008 in Gokwe, Lovemore Machokoto – abducted 10 December 2008 in Gokwe, Charles Muza – abducted 10 December 2008 in Gokwe, Edmore Vangirayi – abducted 10 December 2008 in Gokwe, Graham Matehwa – abducted 17 December in Makoni South and Peter Munyanyi – abducted 13 December 2008 in Gutu South.

Other three political detainees, MDC head of security, Chris Dhlamini, former personal aide to MDC President and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, Gandi Mudzingwa and photo journalist Andreson Manyere are still in detention.


moyo aisher says:

Mugabe must thing like a matuared somebody, not like a baby

Submitted by moyo aisher on 25 March 2009 - 7:20pm
gugu says:

Mugabe is an animal without a name so peolpe of zim must wake up .that man never agrees to anything without something in it for him.

Submitted by gugu on 26 March 2009 - 11:59am

Add new comment

  • Articles
  • Reports
Zimbabwe farmers
IntroductionThis is my last article in this series and I have given...
Sunday, 25 May 2014 - 1:01pm
rural farm Zimbabwe
SummaryThis final article examines the importance of land policy for...
Wednesday, 7 May 2014 - 10:31am
Zimbabwe farmer
IntroductionIn this 11th of 12 articles, I bring the issue of land in...
Tuesday, 6 May 2014 - 7:22pm
cattle herder - Zimbabwe
IntroductionIn this 10th of 12 articles I focus on the need to...
Thursday, 28 November 2013 - 11:02am
Zimbabwe smallholding
SummaryThe debate on land tenure has reached an impasse. A...
Tuesday, 12 November 2013 - 7:31pm
Zanupf Rally, 2013
In a reworked narrative on nationalism, veterans were cast as the...
Wednesday, 2 October 2013 - 11:03am
Note to all: please contact if you have...
Monday, 19 August 2013 - 10:10am
I was ten years old when my two best friends were murdered. I can...
Monday, 5 August 2013 - 3:16pm
ZEC Zimbabwe Voter Registration billboard
In Zimbabwe Election Watch Issue 3 we discussed The President's...
Thursday, 27 June 2013 - 3:46pm
The South African weekly newspaper, the Mail & Guardian,...
Monday, 10 June 2013 - 2:55pm
Simba Makoni, Morgan Tsvangirai, Dumiso Dabengwa
Zimbabwe Election Watch Issue 3 is written in the wake of a...
Thursday, 6 June 2013 - 11:36am
February 2013 has come and gone, bringing with it yet another set of...
Tuesday, 21 May 2013 - 8:51am
A woman waits to obtain her national identity card during a voter registration drive in Harare May 9, 2013
Issue 2 of Zimbabwe Election Watch (ZEW) continues Sokwanele's...
Wednesday, 15 May 2013 - 9:31am
We are Zimbabwe logo
Have you ever sat down to read the newspaper, perhaps during your...
Monday, 29 April 2013 - 9:58am
Beatrice Mtetwa exiting a police vehicle
We are launching Zimbabwe Election Watch 2013 on Independence Day....
Thursday, 18 April 2013 - 8:06am

21.08.2013 Judge Bhunu under fire for call to arrest Tsvangirai’s lawyers SW Radio Africa (ZW)
20.08.2013 MDC-T stab victim ‘lucky to be alive’ SW Radio Africa (ZW)
19.08.2013 MDC-T under attack in Mugabe’s home district SW Radio Africa (ZW)
16.08.2013 Tsvangirai withdraws Presidential Polls Challenge SW Radio Africa (ZW)
16.08.2013 Concern raised as women and children flee ZANU PF violence SW Radio Africa (ZW)
15.08.2013 Villagers threatened over elections Zimbabwean, The (ZW)
15.08.2013 Increasing political retribution against MDC-T supporters SW Radio Africa (ZW)
15.08.2013 Binga villagers in fear as ZPF retribution continues SW Radio Africa (ZW)
15.08.2013 Judge defers ruling on Tsvangirai’s election records request SW Radio Africa (ZW)
15.08.2013 Tsvangirai MDC Says Mozambicans Voted in Zimbabwe Polls VOANews (USA)
14.08.2013 Komichi trial date finally set as lawyers prepare fresh bail appeal SW Radio Africa (ZW)
14.08.2013 Tsvangirai presidential challenge to be heard Saturday SW Radio Africa (ZW)
13.08.2013 Mugabe criticized for hate speech on Heroes Day SW Radio Africa (ZW)
13.08.2013 SABC journalists held for filming ‘Freedom Square’ SW Radio Africa (ZW)
13.08.2013 Police refuse to assist threatened headman in Chimanimani SW Radio Africa (ZW)
12.08.2013 Timba kick-starts fight to have Mt Pleasant poll result annulled SW Radio Africa (ZW)
12.08.2013 Mberengwa women left half-naked by ZANU PF activists SW Radio Africa (ZW)
10.08.2013 Nikuv paid $10 million to rig polls - MDC-T Nehanda Radio
09.08.2013 Police search MDC-T Chikomba office as ZPF retribution continues SW Radio Africa (ZW)
09.08.2013 Tsvangirai files ConCourt presidential appeal SW Radio Africa (ZW)

Latest comments

Mourning the loss of hope and security in the wake of a shamelessly stolen election: what can we do?

Kenneth Donald : 09 August 2013

Bless you Rose for your gracious e-mail and your prayerful concern for your people of Zimbabwe. As a Christian in Scotland,we pray for Zimbabwe at thisdifficult & painful time. May the Lord...

M.Spinks : 07 August 2013

Thank you for your words - as a Zimbabwean living in the UK now, I have been feeling very depressed about the election results and also angry with the corrupt, immoral and insane ZANU-PF party....

Eugene Visser : 06 August 2013

Brilliantly sad article. 

Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

I stab at...

Debra : 06 August 2013

Thank-you for writing this beautiful heartfelt letter, for sharing what you have shared. It is so unbelievably wrong that your lives in your country are held 'hostage' by this farcical power-...

Rose Brent : 06 August 2013

Reading this has brought back so many unhappy memories and hopes and dreams that have been shatered.... I can hear and feel your pain. I too am a Zimbabwean and am treated like I am an Alien...

Ros Lindley : 06 August 2013

I am not Zimbabwean, but I applaud your bravery to speak out.  I wish you well and I apologise for my president's congratulations of the elections and the result.  My prayers and love are with you...

TERENCE fRENCH : 06 August 2013

Another stolen election, and confirmation that the choice to emigrate frommy homeland has been justified by history. What a cruel oppressive government.

Estelle O'Reilly : 05 August 2013

A few weeks before the elections, my husband and I checked online to see if we were registered to vote. We were both registered, and under Ward 10 in Kadoma Central. When we got inside, I was on...

Anonymous : 05 August 2013

This article captures my feelings at the moment perfectly. Thank you so much for writing this. The people of Zimbabwe are not stupid, and we can hope that in the end justice will prevail. The...

ZANU PF Manifesto: Team Zanu PF 2013

Musimuvi : 07 August 2013

Doe it not hurt to work up and find your self so wrong, now that the results are out. Next time please do not speak on behalf of the people whom you seem to have completely no clue about.

Sometimes I hate to be Zimbabwean

Nhamodzenyika Freedom : 07 August 2013

Simon great article know that you do not stand alone  there are lots of zimbabweans who feel the same way

Statement by the Government of Botswana on the 2013 Election in the Republic of Zimbabwe

buxus-hans : 06 August 2013

oneparty claims victory; it is all a lie and the bill will come as investors now pull out of Zimbabwe.Which means more hardship for the families who already have a hard life....

Declaration by the High Representative Catherine Ashton on behalf of the EU on the elections in Zimbabwe

Abel Rumbwere : 05 August 2013

new look zimbabwe

marco camoronezi : 04 August 2013

Congratulations to Zimbabwe for a peaceful election that certainly deserves thumps up from all corners of the globe.After all this is an election like no other but one that is bound to be...

judy van aard : 04 August 2013

Anybody who believes it was free and fair whn it was so obviouslyy

ririgged is a complete idiot. ZANU had it so tied up they didn't even to use violence. SADSADC and the AU worship Mugabe...

President Tsvangirai’s statement to the press after the MDC national council meeting, Harare, 3 August 2013

mucha : 03 August 2013

Mr Tsvangson, pliz accept defeat and that will retain credibility as a leader. You didn't do your home work properly. You didn't encourage your supporters to register and relied on the same voters...

ZEC Results: announced 1 August 2013

mafana : 02 August 2013

Zim political parties should think about the people's welfare and not self willed personal interests.Voter margins show in mos places a united front would have brought about a different result.

When youths become too important

ZANDILE : 01 August 2013

Finally, somebody shares my thoughts! I feel sorry for these youths and their parents.

This time I will rise up

Immie : 31 July 2013

God bless you. You have my support.

Forces of evil lurking in the dark

True Grit : 31 July 2013

One can only hope that the result will be a positive one for Zimbabwe's future.