Churches fret over deteriorating security situation in Zim

The Zimbabwe Heads of Christian Denominations (ZHOCD) has implored President Mnangagwa to publicly condemn the abduction and torture of perceived government critics and launch an independent investigation into the so-called “third force” reportedly behind the criminal acts.

This came out during a prayer service held at Mpilo Hospital, Tuesday evening for the missing Dr Peter Magombeyi who was allegedly abducted on the evening of 14 September from his home in Budiriro, Harare.

Medical doctors across the country have been holding a series of demonstrations demanding thorough investigations and the immediate release of Dr Magombeyi.

Speaking during the night vigil Reverend Cele, an official from the church grouping said it is was worrying that there have not been any arrests of those behind the abductions.

“Church leaders are learning with deep concern the deteriorating human security situation especially as a demonstrated by at least 20 reports of abductions.

“This situation is deeply worrying because none of the reported cases of abduction and torture have been successfully investigated and prosecuted.

“The situation is further disturbing because there is government communication suggesting that there is a possibility of a third force.

“Apart from it being too coincidental that this third hand is only targeting civil society activists and other dissenting voices, it is worrying that after so many reported cases, not a single person has been arrested,” Rev Cele said.

The church grouping also condemned the politicisation of the security sector.

“The church leaders are also concerned to hear of the fragile relationships within the security sector alleged to have only worsened in the course of the November 2017 transition.

“If this is the case, the church leaders are worried that the politicization of the security sector in the context of deep inter and intra party fragmentation puts the whole nation at highest levels of security,” said Rev. Cele.

“The church believes it is in the interest of President Mnangagwa’s legacy to provide leadership towards building national consensus towards national unity, peace, justice, and prosperity of all Zimbabwean.

Meanwhile, in a move to avert a health crisis, the government has deployed doctors from the uniformed forces to public hospitals around the country as the medical doctors have vowed to continue their industrial action until the government addresses their grievances.

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