Sekeramayi denies CIO involvement in abductions

sydney_sekeramayiHARARE State Security Minister, Sydney Sekeramayi has denied the involvement of State security agents in the abduction last year of six Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) activists and a freelance journalist. (Pictured: Sydney Sekeramayi State Security Minister)

Meanwhile, the activists – Kisimusi Dhlamini, Gandhi Mudzingwa, Chinoto Zulu, Zacharia Nkomo, Regis Mujeye, Mapfumo Garutsa and journalist Andrison Manyere – were granted their application to have their matter referred to the Supreme Court by the High Court.

The seven were due to stand trial on terrorism charges this week but their lawyers filed an application for referral to the Supreme Court.

They are seeking a permanent stay of prosecution saying their clients’ rights were violated when they were seized from their different places last year by State agents and kept in secret detention for weeks.

The activists also allege torture at the hands of the secret agents, who were trying to force them to admit to committing acts of bombing on two Harare police stations, a railway line and a bridge near the town of Norton between August and November last year.

Presiding judge, Charles Hungwe on Wednesday dismissed the State’s attempts to block the case from being referred to the highest court in the land.

He berated State prosecutor, Chris Mutangadura for “wasting the court’s time” by proffering what he found as ridiculous reasons in his attempt to stop the Supreme Court referral.

Mutangadura contended that the allegations of torture by State security agents made by the accused persons should not be viewed adequate enough to stop their prosecution.

He further suggested the court should institute a parallel process to look into the claims by the accused persons while their trial was in progress.

In an attempt to support his case, Mutangadura produced an uncommissioned affidavit which he claimed was from Sekeramayi.

It is denied that the applicants were kidnapped or abducted at all by State Security Agents, Sekeramayi’s affidavit read.

I therefore cannot be obliged to have the so-called kidnappers and abductors identified, because there are no kidnappers and abductors to talk of all.

Sekeramayi, who was defence minister at the time, went further to accuse the MDC activists of claiming they were abducted and tortured in a bid to prevent their prosecution in the alleged crimes.

The applicants are therefore deliberately and desperately referring to security agents as kidnappers in order to whip up emotions and detract attention of the court from the substance of criminal charges.

It is denied that the Ministry of Security ever admitted that any kidnappings ever took place, he said.

Sekeramayis was referring to an affidavit filed by his predecessor, Didymus Mutasa early this year when he ordered the State not to reveal the names of the said State security agents for fear of compromising the clandestine operations of the agents.

He said nowhere in Mutasa’s affidavit was it mentioned that State security agents were responsible for the abductions.

Justice Hungwe summarily dismissed the assertion by Sekeramayi.

Post published in: Politics

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