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Chamisa, diplomats crank up pressure on Mnangagwa

by ZimLive
17 Sep 2019 at 00:06hrs | Views
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Nelson Chamisa on Monday pointed an accusing finger at President Emmerson Mnangagwa's regime following the abduction of the doctors' union president.

Chamisa accused Mnangagwa of presiding over a paranoid regime which abducts critics and trade unionists, saying it was proof that he "lacks consent to govern."

"I pray for the return of Dr Peter Magombeyi, the president of the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association who was abducted on Saturday night. We can't build a united nation when our doctors are underpaid and abducted when they raise legitimate concerns. It shows a lack of consent to govern!" Chamisa said on Twitter.

He added: "The state can't claim not to know where Dr Magombeyi is, it has a duty to protect citizens. Failure to do so points to an incapable or incompetent state or both. Citizens can't live in fear of being abducted, more-so for expressing their rights. This defines a banana republic!"

Over 200 doctors and other health workers marched from Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals into central Harare to hand over a petition to Mnangagwa, but were blocked by anti-riot police who only let through their leaders.

Doctors held solidarity marches at Mpilo Central Hospital and the United Bulawayo Hospitals.

Nurses and radiographers have threatened to go on strike on Tuesday to ratchet up pressure on the government.

Union leaders accuse government agents of abducting Dr Magombeyi at his home in Budiriro just after 10PM last Saturday, days after he received threats for calling for a doctors' strike over poor pay on September 3. He was allegedly seized by three armed men driving in a vehicle without number plates.

The government said the abduction could be the work of a "third force".

"The possibility of a third force being involved in the alleged abductions for political expediency and to sustain the human rights abuse narrative ahead of the forthcoming United Nations General Assembly cannot be ruled out," police spokesman Paul Nyathi added.

Western diplomats in Harare called on the government to move with urgency.

"Since January, more than 50 civil society, labour and opposition leaders have been abducted in Zimbabwe. No arrests have been made," the United States embassy in Harare said.

"We urge the government to take action and hold perpetrators of these human rights violations accountable."

The United Kingdom's ambassador to Zimbabwe Melanie Robinson tweeted: "We are very concerned about the reports regarding the alleged abduction of Dr Magombeyi. We are following this case closely and are engaging with our partners to verify his whereabouts."

Timo Olkkonen, the Head of Delegation of the European Union to Zimbabwe said: "Praying for a speedy return of disappeared Dr Magombeyi. The case needs to be swiftly and thoroughly investigated."

Source - ZimLive