BY SILAS NKALA
A Matabeleland-based pressure group, Ibhetshu likaZulu, on Thursday remembered 11 Silobela villagers who were abducted by State security agents at the height of Gukurahundi on January 30 and 31, 1985.
Thursday last week marked the 35th anniversary since the men disappeared without trace.
The list of those who were abducted and still missing are Kefasi Ndebele, Clement Baleni, who was a teacher at St Dominic’s School, Enoch Tshuma, Simon Siginya Bhuzo Dube, Dennis Mabhikwa, Mbulani Mnkandla, Lambart Ncube, Milton Ndlangamandla, Velile Hlongwane, Mika Cephas Ndebele and Patrick Mthethwa.
In 1993, relatives of the abductees filed an application to the High Court seeking an order compelling the police, Prisons Services, Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) and the army to furnish them information which might lead to their discovery.
The applicants submitted that their missing relatives were taken from their homes on the night of January 30 and 31, 1985 by men using a vehicle similar to the type used by police or CIO.
They said they were driven away and have never been seen to date. A check with the police established that they were not in police custody while the army, prisons commissioner-general and CIO director-general also distanced themselves from the matter.
“We are asking former State Security minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, former Defence minister Sydney Sekeramai, former Fifth Brigade leader Retired Air Marshal Perrence Shiri and the former director-general of the CIO to help the families with the bones if they are dead or if they are alive to bring them as their families are still painfully searching for answers,” Ibhetshu likaZulu’s secretary-general Mbuso Fuzwayo said in a statement.
Fuzwayo said they were concerned that “the failure to find answers of the dark cloud of the past will give rain of unrest in the future.”