Activist Reports CIO Operative For Cellphone Theft
12 June 2018
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MBUSO Fuzwayo, secretary-general of civil rights group Ibhetshu LikaZulu, has filed robbery charges against a suspected Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) operative who allegedly confiscated his mobile phone on Saturday after finding the activists constructing a memorial plaque at a Gukurahundi mass grave at Bhalagwe, Kezi district.

Fuzwayo yesterday told Southern Eye that the incident occurred while they were erecting a memorial plaque at the mass grave site, together with villagers from Kezi.

He said four CIO operatives arrived in a white Nissan twin cab at the site and allegedly identified themselves as police officers.

“I introduced myself to them and asked them who were they since I had told them who I am. They told us that they were police officers. They started taking pictures of us at work and I also took their pictures as well,” Fuzwayo said.

“That is when an argument arose over why I was taking their pictures and I also asked why they were also taking pictures of us. They then took my mobile phone, forced us to throw away the mortar we were using, before they drove away. They later came back in the company of three uniformed police officers and two others in civilian clothes.”

Fuzwayo said the CIO operatives accused him of constructing the plaque without engaging local traditional leaders.

He said the operatives ordered them to stop the programme.

“I reported the matter to the police in Kezi on Saturday under case number 1606/2018 – RRB 3102163. That is when I was given back my mobile phone,” Fuzwayo, who claimed that he reported the matter at Kezi Police Station in the company of his lawyer, Nqobani Sithole, said.

Sithole said they were now waiting for the police to advise them on the court date.

“Fuzwayo approached us saying he was robbed of his mobile phone by the police and the CIOs and we went to Kezi to recover the phone,” Sithole said.

“When we arrived there the police officers denied the accusations and it only emerged that the person who took the mobile phone was a CIO operative only identified as Kudakwashe. So we filed robbery charges against him. We are waiting for the police to advise us on the court date. However, the police gave us the phone.”