POLICE in Harare have summoned Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association (ZNLWVA) secretary-general, Victor Matemadanda, for yet unknown reasons, but likely to be associated with a series of “anti-government statements” he has made in the past few weeks.
BY RICHARD CHIDZA
ZNLWVA spokesperson, Douglas Mahiya, confirmed the development yesterday.
“It is true, police from the Law and Order section called him and indicated they wanted to ‘talk to him’. They want to arrest him, but we are not sure of the charge yet,” he said.
“His lawyers have since negotiated for him to surrender himself on Wednesday (tomorrow). It is clear they would have wanted to keep him in custody throughout the holiday.”
Efforts to contact Matemadanda were fruitless, as his mobile phone went unanswered in the morning before it became unreachable later in the day.
His lawyer, Beatrice Mtetwa, said she could not locate him.
“I was supposed to take him to the Law and Order section on Wednesday (tomorrow) because we only got information that they were looking for him on Saturday,” she said.
“But now, there is some sort of confusion because I got a message from someone informing me that police have since picked him up. I have been trying to locate him, but with no success.”
Mtetwa said she had no idea why the police were looking for Matemadanda.
“I would be speculating. I have no idea,” she said.
Police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said she was out of office and referred all questions to her junior Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi, whose mobile phone went unanswered.
Matemadanda, along with other leading figures in the ZNLWVA executive, fell out of favour with authorities last year after war veterans released a damning communiqué slamming President Robert Mugabe’s leadership, his refusal to hand over power and describing the Zanu PF leader as “genocidal and manipulative”.
Since then, relations between Mugabe and his former colleagues in the liberation struggle have plummeted to unprecedented levels, with the war veterans demanding that he hands over power to Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Last week, Matemadanda told journalists that they would be mobilising against a faction of the ruling party known as G40 that they claim is holding Mugabe “hostage”.
Matemadanda appeared at the Press conference in a T-shirt emblazoned with the message “control your children first” in reference to reports of Mugabe’s two sons, Chatunga and Robert Jnr’s alleged wayward behaviour.