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Villagers want businessman charged for civilian killings by army

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By Matabeleland North Correspondent


Victoria Falls: Acting Chief Mvutu, Bishop Sibanda of Victoria Falls is expected to file court papers seeking to formally evict local businessman Munyaradzi Mlauzi from the community and have him charged as an accomplice in the recent alleged shooting to death of two villagers.

Chisuma villagers outside Victoria Falls have also reportedly petitioned the army to vacate its temporary base at Chisuma Primary School.

Villagers accuse Mlauzi of using security forces to victimise people. They have also accused soldiers of sexually abusing minor girls at their base.

Mlauzi has since disappeared as villagers bay for his blood.

The deceased Morgan Zhuzha Sibanda (36) and Dumisani (Dudu) Mpofu were buried recently in Chisuma while the two soldiers Bernard Sibanda (30) and Bonang Nare (21) are in custody after appearing in court for murder.

“The truth has to be told for people to find closure. The businessman involved in this must not set foot in the area again. That’s enough.

“The chief will be doing papers to send to court because that man is an accomplice and should be charged too,” said Hwange West MP Godfrey Dube.

Villagers want an inquest done on the incident.

Kachechete councillor Givemeagain Moyo told mourners at the burial of the victims that “something is being worked out to seek justice” on the issue”.

“We have been told of abuse cases that have been going on. Those who have been abused or know someone who has been abused and failed to successfully lodge complaints with the police, come forward.

“We need to get to the bottom of everything to find closure. Government should also make an inquiry into this so people find closure,” said Cllr Moyo.

On Sunday, firebrand Mthwakazi Revolutionary Party youths led by organising secretary Partone Xaba visited the community.

In a statement, youth spokesperson Alberto Dube likened the killings to the Gukurahundi atrocities in which 20 000 civilians died in the hands of the military in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces back in the 1980s.

He accused state security agents of acting carelessly and said President Emmerson Mnangagwa should take responsibility in the killings.

“The Chisuma shooting incident and the subsequent lying by state security cannot be taken lightly considering that this is the same modus operandi that was used during the yet to be solved Gukurahundi genocide.

“The state media reportedly repeated that the victims were criminals and tried to disarm the soldiers, the same way they did during the genocide.

“This was of course a rehearsed fables and cunning devices meant to hoodwink the public into believing that the army acted responsibly.

“We are aware that deceased’s young brother Calvin Sibanda was beaten up a few days before the shooting and was badly injured.

“MRP stands with the victims’ families, Chisuma villagers, Matabeleland North and the rest of Mthwakazi.

“An injury to one of us is an injury to all of us. The army personnel should vacate from the temporary base in Chisuma and stop sleeping with young girls and married women.

“Justice must be served and the victims’ children be compensated. The businessman must be charged with murder,” said MRP youths.