Zimbabwean activists who have survived of a wave of violence and abductions have urged the international community to stop turning a blind eye to the increasingly violent crackdown on dissenting voices “linked to (no one) else except the government of Zimbabwe”.
Chairperson for NAVUZ’ Central Business District, Kudakwashe Kambakunje, also known as Wellington or Welly, was kidnapped after 22:00 local time on 27 September in the centre of the capital, Harare.
Many believe the alleged abduction is linked to an incident that happened the previous day in Harare’s business district, and more generally to the increasing role of the vendors’ union in Zimbabwe’s political and social struggle.
According to witnesses, unidentified men came out of five vehicles – two twin-cabs and three small private cars – at about 22:00 before firing gun shots in the air with vendors trying to intervene as Kambakunje was taken away. After receiving a tip-off, NAVUZ members found Wellington the next morning on the Old Mazowe Road (bush road), badly wounded and left for dead.