MDC youths abducted in Bulawayo, found at police station

mdc__chThe scores of youths who were picked up by armed police officers early Monday morning in Bulawayo Central are reported to be in detention at Saucertown police station. The MDC-T confirmed on Wednesday that the youths are party members who had gone missing after police abducted them from the Trenance and Richmond areas.

The MDC said approximately 30 youths are in custody facing a variety of charges, including violence and cattle rustling. SW Radio Africa correspondent Lionel Saungweme said the arrests are related to squabbles between ZANU PF and MDC youths in the Trenance area.

According to Saungweme, ZANU PF member Himan Tshuma defected to the MDC and caused many other defections after he was elected branch chairperson. This angered ZANU PF youths and led to Tshuma being assaulted by 2 army officers on March 12th at Mvutshwa camp.

The story became public after MDC youths reported it to the police and spoke to the local press. The arrests are a warning to MDC youths to be quiet next time and not report any political attacks, said our correspondent.

The police have made no statements regarding this case and it is not clear when the remaining MDC youths will be released or brought to court.

Meanwhile the trial of Energy and Power Development Minister, Elton Mangoma, resumed at the High Court Wednesday with the State witness, Justin Mupamhanga, being cross examined by the defence. Mupamhanga is the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Energy.

The MDC say Mangoma is facing fake charges of abusing his public office as a minister by authorising a fuel purchase from South Africa earlier this year. The trial failed to kick of Tuesday after prison officials said the minister could not be brought to court, as they did not have fuel.

The trial will continue on Thursday.

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