By Daniel Chigundu
Patson Dzamara who is a brother to missing outspoken activist Itai, says the government must release his brother even if he is dead, adding that they are capable of burying their own.
Dzamara (Itai) went missing on 9 March 2015 when he had gone to have a haircut and was never found up to now, making this month the 3rd year anniversary of the incident.
Addressing activists who had gathered to commemorate the life and courage of Itai at Africa Unity Square, Patson said he was convinced that his brother was kidnapped by military intelligence and they are demanding his release dead or alive.
“Our first condition to (Emmerson) Mnangagwa and (Constantino) Chiwenga is that release Itai Dzamara dead or alive. If you have killed him at least give us his body so that we can rebury it.
“We are capable of burying our own, we have a place in our rural home where we bury our dead, it’s not your duty to bury Dzamara,” he said.
— Open Parly ZW (@OpenParlyZw) March 9, 2018
Dzamara also took the opportunity to urge opposition parties in the country to use the Itai Dzamara case to de-campaign President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Zanu PF in the impending general elections.
“I know that my brother (Itai Dzamara) was kidnapped by military intelligence, but today I give you permission to use this case in your campaign to denounce Mnangagwa.
“We are saying people should not vote for Mnangagwa until they release Dzamara or until there is closure in this case.
“We have written letters to Mnangagwa about this issue but he is ignoring us, he doesn’t want to engage the family, in fact, he is the one who should have engaged the family.
“This time around we are no backing down, we are taking war to them, you will see what we are going to do to them, if they want to kills us, they can kills, if they want to kidnap us they can, if they want to arrest us they can arrest us but we are taking our placards to him (Mnangagwa),” he said.
Itai Dzamara a former journalist with The Zimbabwe Independent rose to fame after delivering a letter to former President Robert Mugabe asking him to resign citing that he was no longer capable of discharging his duties due to age.
After the famous letter, Dzamara embarked on his Occupy Africa Unity Square demonstration almost on a daily basis which prompted the government to deploy heavily armed Police Support Unity and water cannons.
Various activists including students who gave solidarity messages said Dzamara should be the last person to disappear for demanding their rights and just-governance.
It, however, remains to be seen how the Mnangagwa establishment which has been describing itself as being open will react to the Dzamara demands.