…As More Opposition Activists Flee Political Persecution
By A Correspondent| Lovemore and Linda Handiseni, prominent opposition political activists have never known peace in the aftermaths of the much-publicized Nyatsime political violence which rocked Chitungwiza in June.
The duo, active members of Zimbabwe’s biggest opposition political party, the Citizens Coalition for (CCC) have been on the dreaded state security agency’s hit list, ever since the Nyatsime June violence, a culmination of the murder of opposition political activist Moreblessing Ali by alleged the ruling party’s Pius Jamba.
It all started when a heavily mutilated corpse of Ali was found in a small well at the homestead of Jamba, a known ZANU PF apparatchik on the 11th of June after she had disappeared on the 16th of May
.The violence which followed the discovery of the body has already led to the incarceration of CCC deputy national chairperson who is also Zengeza West legislator Job Sikhala for more than six months in pretrial incarceration in what some lawyers are arguing that is a clear case of political motivated charges.
Another CCC legislator Godfrey Sithole was also arrested and charged with incitement to commit public violence to avenge the death of Ali.
Now the Handiseni pair is fleeing persecution after having been hounded by state operatives who seek to tie the duo to the violence which rocked the Nyatsime area after the callous murder of Moreblessing Ali.
On the 10th of October, suspected agents and regime supporters descended to the house of the Handiseni in Harare South looking for him.
He was brutalized, his house ransacked, and his wife Linda raped.
Up to now, the assailants have not been caught even though some of them are known within the neighbourhood, they have been left off the hook by law enforcement agencies, instilling more terror on other opposition activists.
At the funeral wake of Ali, sixteen opposition political activists including two opposition members of parliament, were arrested for allegedly protesting the murder and charged with inciting public violence, an offence that carries a lengthy prison term.
Security agencies continue a crackdown on opposition activists and human rights groups have reported dozens of abductions, beatings and rape cases carried out by unidentified men all over the country.