Zimbabwe opposition MP and councillor arrested for attempted murder

Political Strife in Zimbabwe: Arrests on Attempted Murder Charges Intensify

by Motoni Olodun

A Zimbabwean opposition lawmaker and a local councilor have been arrested on charges of attempted murder and malicious damage to property, police said on Wednesday.

Maureen Kademaunga, a member of parliament for the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) in Sunningdale constituency, Clayd Mashozhera, a councilor for Ward 10, and Daudi Jessub were accused of attacking three people near a supermarket in Harare on August 23, the day of the by-elections.

According to police spokesperson Paul Nyathi, the suspects allegedly used vehicles, including one belonging to Kademaunga, to block and assault the victims. A Toyota Spacio vehicle was set on fire during the incident.

“The suspects are implicated in the attack on three complainants, which occurred at the corner of Boshoff Drive and Seke Road near Metro-Peech, Harare, on 23rd August 2023,” Nyathi said.

“The suspects were allegedly using a Toyota Mark X vehicle, which belongs to Maureen Kademaunga, a Silver Honda Fit, and another vehicle, which is yet to be identified, when they blocked the complainants and attacked them.” The suspects will appear in court in due course.

The CCC is a coalition of opposition parties led by Nelson Chamisa, who challenged President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s victory in the 2018 presidential election. The coalition has accused the ruling ZANU-PF party of using violence and intimidation to suppress its supporters and candidates.

In February, one CCC supporter was killed, and over 20 others were injured when a machete-wielding gang attacked a rally in Kwekwe, a town in central Zimbabwe. Amnesty International condemned the attack and called for an independent investigation.

“This assault bears all the hallmarks of a pre-meditated attack that aims to intimidate political opposition and block access to their constituents ahead of the upcoming by-elections in March,” Muleya Mwananyanda, Amnesty International’s deputy director for Southern Africa, said at the time.

“The government’s rhetoric has done much to incite such ferocious violence and unfortunately little to ensure the free exercise of the rights to freedom of assembly and association.”

Zimbabwe has a history of political violence, especially during election periods. In 2008, over 200 people were killed and thousands displaced in a wave of violence that followed the disputed presidential election between Mnangagwa’s predecessor, Robert Mugabe, and Morgan Tsvangirai, Chamisa’s mentor and former leader of the main opposition party.

Source: New Zimbabwe


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