BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
THE High Court yesterday granted an order allowing the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association acting president, Peter Magombeyi to urgently seek medical examination and treatment in South Africa amid reports that he could have suffered brain damage during his recent abduction and torture by suspected State security agents.
Magombeyi’s family and lawyers had to seek recourse at the High Court after police kept guard at his hospital bed with the intention to interview him in connection with his alleged abduction.
Five doctors who include Trust Zaranyika, Aaron Musara, Andrew Mataruse, Walter Mangezi and Shingirirai Meki signed an affidavit confirming that Magombeyi required further functional brain imaging and toxicological evaluation, services which are not available in Zimbabwe.
Magombeyi was abducted in Budiriro on September 14 by three masked men believed to be State security agents, before he was found dumped 29km out of Harare last week.
He claimed he was tortured and electrocuted by his abductors after leading a nationwide doctors’ strike. He was referred to a private hospital for medical examination under heavy security.
Magombeyi’s father Kingston successfully filed an urgent High Court application to have his son treated outside the country after being advised that the condition could not be treated locally.
Magombeyi’s father said prior to his son’s abduction, he had received a threatening message concerning his possible abduction and filed a police report, reference number IR090253.
“On September 19, at about 2000hrs, I received information that my son had been dumped in Nyabira. I rushed there as fast as I could, but the police were the first to get to him. They spent considerable time with him in the absence of his family members or legal practitioners.
When I was eventually granted access to him, he was visibly disoriented and kept insisting that he wanted to sleep,” Magombeyi’s father submitted.
“He, however, responded to a series of questions from the police over a prolonged period of time before they handed him over to me at about 0100hrs on September 20.”
He further submitted that he arranged private security for his son at the Avenues Clinic, but police brought their own team of medical doctors to examine and extract pathological samples from him without consulting the family.
“I advised them that this process was in violation of my son’s right. They did not prescribe any treatment for him. They just collected his samples and handed them to the police and they went away. As they did not share their findings with anyone and did not prescribe any treatment plan, their interests and the interests of those who commissioned them are divorced from a desire to see the recovery of my son.”
Magombeyi’s abduction received global condemnation, but government has denied responsibility, suggesting he could have been abducted by a third force to soil the image of President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration.