MDC official arrested for distributing party newsletter
By Pindai Dube
BULAWAYO – Police in Bubi district in Matabeleland North province arrested
and detained for seven days without charge Sibangani Kesa, an official from
the mainstream MDC party, for distributing the party’s newsletter The
Kesa, who is the MDC ward 12 chairman in Bubi district, was arrested on 15
July at Drumland Resettlement area by two plain clothes police officers and
detained at Inyathi and Lupane police stations for a week, only to be
released on Friday without charge.
The two police officers who arrested him are believed to have been tipped
off by some Zanu PF officials in the area.
Relating the incident to the Daily News at MDC Bulawayo province offices
where he has sought refuge, Kesa said he was arrested near his homestead in
Drumland resettlement area whilst distributing the party newsletter he had
brought from Bulawayo to villagers.
“I was arrested on 15 July and detained at Inyathi police station for five
days before being transferred to Lupane police station where I was again
detained for another two days before my release without a charge on Friday
22 July,” said Kesa.
He said before his arrest, Sithembiso Ndlovu, the Zanu PF councilor for Ward
12 in Bubi, had threatened him several times that she would fix him over his
Bubi –Unguza constituency is a Zanu PF stronghold under mines minister Obert
Mpofu. MDC chairman for Matabeleland North Sengezo Tshabangu confirmed Kesa’s
arrest saying: “Zanu PF is on a crusade to intimidate and harass our party
members using the security agents.”
When contacted for comment, Matabeleland South provincial police
spokesperson Trust Ndlovu said he was out office.
Kesa’s arrest came at a time when a 76-year-old white commercial farmer and
miner Mike Van Royen was arrested in Matobo in Matabeleland South province
in a move viewed as meant to facilitate the grabbing of his farming and
mining business by Zanu PF officials.
Van Royen was arrested on Friday in Bulawayo on charges of insulting
President Robert Mugabe.
He runs Cynthia Mine and Asher Estates in Matobo district, which was a scene
of earlier clashes between a group of Zanu PF youth and Van Royen workers as
the Zanu PF supporters sought to take over the venture by force.
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