Mugabe Addresses Disaster Preparedness Conference in Japan

After leaving his country burning, with a political activist illegally abducted and detained for simply calling for accountable government, Robert Mugabe was doing want he knows best yesterday – addressing the United Nations.


He was also leaving behind people 20 000 who had been made homeless by his government’s own lack of disaster preparedness – in fact his government had created the disaster due to corruption which has been exposed in Parliament, but nothing has been done about it.

So what does the UN invite Mugabe to address them on disaster preparedness for and what could he possibly add to a conference on disaster preparedness where he takes an entourage of 100 cronies?

He also left his country in turmoil over the abduction of Itai Dzamara, a journalist who turned political when he realised that his government was not listening to anything he was publishing.

He started organising demonstration and petitions calling on the government to resign, and the government thought the best way of dealing with him was to make him disappear. He has not been seen for a week and there are fears for his life.

The MDC-T UK joined the MDC-T Asia Pacific Region in calling on the UN and countries of the Asia Pacific to use the occasion of the 3rd United Nations Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Japan to voice their concerns at the abduction of Itai Dzamara.

President Robert Mugabe is in Japan now attending this meeting and the MDC-T Asia Pacific Region wants to bring to the attention of the Region to what President Mugabe would have left behind in Zimbabwe.

The former Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Jacqueline Zwambila, called on the United Nations and regional countries, especially the host country, Japan, to demand the immediate release of Itai who was abducted on Monday in broad daylight.

Even if we consider that he was arrested, the 48 hour period of a lawful detention has elapsed without him brought to court. But his was not even an arrest because he was just bundled into a car – a practice that has been condemned by the Supreme Court in the case of Jestina Mukoko.

We condemn in the strongest terms the public abduction of the leader of OAUS and journalist Itai Dzamara who recently hand delivered a petition to President Mugabe’s offices demanding that he step down.

We also welcome Australian Government expression through its Embassy in Zimbabwe of deep concern at the abduction along with the expressions of concern of the United States, the United Kingdom and the European Union Embassies.

The Mugabe regime has failed to respect fundamental human rights under the country’s new Constitution, including failing to hold free and fair elections.

Itai was abducted at 10:00 on Monday 09 March 2015 from a barber’s shop in his neighborhood by five men who handcuffed him and accused him of stock theft!

Witnesses described the two vehicles Itai was bundled into as a white Isuzu truck with the license plate number AAM1732 and a white Nissan hard-body (twin-cab) with numbers starting with ABB2… Itai was wearing black shorts, a white and red top, blue and brown sandals and was half-shaved.

The MDC-T demands the return, unharmed, of Itai Dzamara to his family who still do not know where he is since his abduction on Monday 09 March 2015.

In Harare, MDC-T Members of Parliament yesterday walked out of Parliament when the Acting Speaker blocked a motion to demand information from the Home Affairs Minister of the whereabouts of Itai Dzamara and demanding his safe return.

Hundreds of MDC-T youths who marched in protest at the abduction and demanding his immediate release, were severely beaten by the notorious Zanu (PF)-partisan police.

Truncheon wielding police in riot gear also entered, without a search warrant, the MDC-T Party headquarters in Harare and also positioned themselves outside the premises, beating up staff who had to be taken to hospital for treatment.

There are also reports that Mugabe is planning to take an entourage of 100 to the 3-day conference, which has raised eyebrows with the Japanese who were willing to process visas for only 42.

The trips are used by Mugabe to give extra income to and engender the loyalty of civil servants who then become partisan and scramble to please him so that they might be included on the next shopping trip.

We condemn this practice and call for professionalism in the civil service. We also condemn the continued siege of the MDC-T Party Headquarters in Harare.