Soldiers arrest and torture MDC-N youths in Bulawayo

September 20, 2011 at 9:29 am Leave a comment

By Tererai Karimakwenda

A group of ten youths from the MDC-N party were picked up by soldiers in
Bulawayo on Saturday and severely beaten and tortured, for allegedly handing
out fliers too close to Robert Mugabe’s State House.

Edwin Ndhlovu, MDC-N spokesman for Bulawayo, told SW Radio Africa that the
soldiers detained the youth for about three hours, during which they were
stripped naked, beaten, splashed with water and made to roll around on the
ground.

They were then turned over to the police at Sauerstown, who held them
without any charges over the weekend, before handing them over to the Law
and Order section at Bulawayo Central Police Station on Monday.

According to Ndhlovu, the police plan to charge the youth with “trespassing
or criminal nuisance” if they appear in court as expected on Tuesday. No
charges have been brought against them since their illegal detention by
soldiers on Saturday.

SW Radio Africa correspondent Lionel Saungweme, said two of the youth
campaigners were encouraging people to vote in an area of Sauerstown, miles
from the State House, when a truckload of soldiers approached and detained
them.

“They tried to reason with the soldiers but failed, and they were forced
into a truck and driven around picking up more youths”, Saungweme explained.
A total of ten were abducted and taken inside the State House, where the
soldiers tortured them.

MDC-N spokesman Ndhlovu described the arrests as “political persecution of
people against Robert Mugabe and ZANU PF”. He added that the MDC-N is also
being targeted because their leader, Professor Welshman Ncube, is gaining
popularity.

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