26 November 2018

Zimbabwe: Mawarire Claims Ex-Colonel's Abduction Ahead of Aug 1 Violence Inquiry

Photo: Innocent Makawa/The Herald
Former South African president and chairperson of the Commission of Inquiry into the August 1 post-election violence Kgalema Motlanthe, flanked by Professor Charity Manyeruke, right, and Chief Emeka Anyaoku at a public hearing in Harare.

National Patriotic Front (NPF) spokesperson Jealousy Mawarire has made claims that retired army colonel and former Zanu PF parliamentary candidate Elliot Piki was abducted by unknown assailants Sunday.

Piki, according to Mawarire through Twitter, was set to testify before the Kgalema Motlanthe chaired Commission of Inquiry into the August 1 post-election disturbances.

Six civilians were gunned down by what is widely believed to be army officers who were deployed into central Harare on the fateful day to put down wild protests over election results by opposition supporters.

"A retired Col, Elliot Piki was allegedly abducted today (Sunday) around 1630 hours by yet unknown people. He was penciled to testify before the Motlanthe Commission tomorrow. Piki contested Tongai Mnangagwa in the Zanu PF primaries leading to the 30 July elections but, was later expelled from Zanu PF," he wrote.

According to Mawarire, Piki's wife has since made a police report on the alleged abduction under police initial crime report, RRB 3784040.

However, Commission spokesperson John Masuku on Sunday dismissed reports that Piki was among those who were expected to testify before the Commission on Monday.

Piki made headlines when he allegedly pointed a gun at one Hama Chidike in a 2017 land dispute but denied the charges when he was arrested following a report to the police.

He also sued former Defence Minister Sydney Sekeramayi over "malicious prosecution" over fuel amounting to $175 000 early this year.

"This is your desperation Mnangagwa," added Mawarire in his tweet.

Mawarire alleges that "Piki was expelled from the ruling party for indiscipline, read contesting the Big Boss's son".

Last week, former Zanu PF political commissar for Harare, Shadreck Mashayamombe told the violence probe team that he was kidnapped and forced him to withdraw his candidature after he found himself pitted against Tongai during party primaries.

He claimed he was ambushed at Avondale Shopping Centre by three armed men and one woman in a Honda Fit without registration plates.

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