Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
GOVERNMENT has said the military will not be involved in investigating alleged abduction cases as this is solely the responsibility of the police.
Defence and War Veterans’ Affairs Deputy Minister Cde Victor Matematanda told senators during Thursday’s question and answer session that the alleged abductions were not a terrorist threat requiring involvement of the military.
He was responding to senators who had quizzed him on what his ministry was doing to curb the abduction incidents.
“I would have been able to answer the question if he had said our borders are porous but this is an investigative matter and requires the police not the army. The army is there to defend and the police does the investigation part. The work of the army is to defend and not to arrest,” said Cde Matemadanda.
“The army can only be involved on the issue asked by the senator, when the police request for assistance from the army. The police have not yet come to the army to say that there are terrorists. We have not heard that in Zimbabwe there are terrorists. I am kindly requesting that we understand the role of the army and that of the police.”
Speaking on the same matter, Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Cde Ziyambi Ziyambi said alleged abduction cases seem to be well-calculated to tarnish the country’s image internationally.
Cde Ziyambi said the country cannot improve its human rights ratings if some individuals continue to claim to have been abducted yet decline to help during police investigations.
“It’s not possible to have police details to guard each and everyone’s house unless you are expecting that someone will be abducted. In addition, these people who are claiming to have been abducted are not giving relevant information to assist the police so that the issues are resolved. We are asking these terrorists and abductors if they could assist the country move forward by stopping what they are doing so that the image of the country is not tarnished. That way the country’s image may be rated better,” said Cde Ziyambi.
He said there is a tendency by some individuals to cook up abduction stories ahead of international conferences to tarnish Zimbabwe’s image on the international stage.
This comes as the country has recorded a series of alleged abductions, the latest being that of Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association’s Dr Peter Magombeyi. He was later found in Nyabira, 20km from Harare. — @nqotshili.