I AM appealing for help to find my brother, Joseph Mudimu who was kidnapped in broad day light by ZANU PF militias, war veterans and supporters on Saturday 24 May 2008 outside our house in Harare. This was at the height of the political violence that was being perpetrated by Zanu PF supporters against people who were perceived to be opponents of Robert Mugabe and his party.
According to eye-witnesses, my brother was forced into a black twin cab Toyota Virgo which did not have number plates. My brother has not been seen since and despite numerous visits to the police at Harare Central Police station, they have pointedly refused to entertain my family’s pleas to open a docket or to investigate.
The family’s pain is prolonged by each passing day and the fact that the law enforcement agencies are refusing to assist is making life very difficult for us. If there is anyone out there who knows something or may have heard something about Joseph’s whereabouts, please help.
Our family would really welcome some closure to this, not that it is going to mean anything if we do not find the whereabouts of our brother. It’s painfully hard not knowing where your sibling is for almost two years and the fate that befell many of those abducted by Zanu PF zealots up and down the country makes our heart cringe.
If there is someone out there who may have any knowledge about the whereabouts of my brother, please help. As a family, we need to put closure to this. Its’ tearing our hearts apart.
Plans for all-night Robert Mugabe birthday party 'are insensitive'.
Plans to hold a lavish all-night birthday party for the Zimbabwean president, Robert Mugabe, were today condemned as insensitive to the suffering of the country's people.
Mugabe's 86th birthday will be celebrated next week with an "extravagant overnight gala" starring local and international musicians, the Zimbabwe Times reported.
The paper said Anywhere Mutambudzi, a retired army major who is an official with the information ministry, would organise the event – being held in Bulawayo – which would run from 6pm on 26 February until 6am the following day.
It quoted Mutambudzi as telling state television: "The gala will feature all major local, as well as some foreign, musicians from the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Africa."
Mugabe, whose birthday is on 21 February, shows no signs of slowing down or willingness to relinquish power to Morgan Tsvangirai of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), his rival in Zimbabwe's unity government.
Opponents criticised the party plans at a time when Zimbabwe's teachers are on strike over pay and around nine in 10 people are unemployed.
Simba Makoni, a former senior member of Mugabe's Zanu-PF party, said: "I'm not aware of the source of the money, but I suspect that state resources will be funnelled to this event improperly.
"If they use state funds for a private citizen's birthday when basic services are starved of funding, it would be the worst degree of insensitivity and disregard for the needs of the people of Zimbabwe.
"It would be an act of gross negligence and incompetence ... no competent state would do such a thing."
David Coltart, the education minister in the power-sharing government, said: "If this is private money, it's none of my business.
"However, if it's government money then it's better spent on school textbooks."
Coltart, a member of the MDC, added that "all the most flamboyant displays of wealth are inappropriate" at a time when government spending on education was paltry.
Raymond Majongwe, the secretary general of the Progressive Teachers' Union of Zimbabwe, said he did not object to the celebration in principle but added that an extravagant cost would "not be in order" when the union's members were being forced to take industrial action.
Since 1986, Mugabe's birthday celebrations have been organised by a Zanu-PF youth group called the 21 February Movement, initially modelled on scouting and aimed at promoting children's rights.
Last year, the president celebrated his 85th birthday with a week of parties costing hundreds of thousands of US dollars.
The events included a banquet, a gala dinner, a public feast and a concert at which dozens of animals were slaughtered.
More pomp and ceremony is expected for the 30th anniversary of Zimbabwe's independence from Britain in April – also signifying Mugabe's 30 years in power.
The MDC said last week that fresh elections may be needed after the latest efforts to end deadlock with Mugabe in the one-year-old unity government ended in failure.
Palestinian Fayeq al-Mabhouh sits in front of posters of his brother and Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, left and right, who was assassinated in Dubai, and Hamas member Mohammed Hussein Mabhouh, in the family house in Jebaliya, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2010. Dubai police appealed for an international manhunt Tuesday after releasing names and photos of an alleged 11-member hit squad accused of stalking and killing Mabhouh last month in a plot that mixed cold precision with spy caper disguises such as fake beards and wigs.
This undated photo released by the Dubai Ruler's Media Office on Monday, Feb. 15, 2010, is claimed by Dubai's Police Chief to show a woman named Gail Folliard of Irish nationality, who the Dubai Police Chief identified as one of eleven suspects wanted in connection with the killing of a Hamas commander, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, in his Dubai hotel room last month.
A presenter points to video footage showing one of the 11 suspects involved in the recent killing of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, a senior Hamas military commander, during a news conference in Dubai February 15, 2010. Dubai will issue arrest warrants soon for 11 Europeans suspected in the killing of a senior Hamas official, and cannot rule out Israeli involvement, the police chief said on Monday.
This combination image made from undated photos released by the Dubai Ruler's Media Office on Monday, Feb. 15, 2010, which were claimed by Dubai's Police Chief to show eleven suspects wanted in connection with the killing of a Hamas commander, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, in his Dubai hotel room last month. (From left to right, top row): Evan Dennings of Irish nationality, Gail Folliard of Irish nationality, James Leonard Clarke of British nationality, Jonathan Louis Graham of British nationality; (From left to right, middle row) Michael Bodenheimer of German nationality, Paul John Keeley of British nationality, Michael Lawrence Barney of British nationality; (From left to right, bottom row) Peter Elvinger of French nationality, Kevin Daveron of Irish nationality, Melvyn Adam Mildiner of British nationality, Stephen Daniel Hodes of British nationality.