Fungai Chaderopa: MP Sanyati Constituency
Fungai Chaderopa is the member of the house of assembly for the Sanyati constituency. She gained notoriety in her constituency in the run up to the 27 June 2008 elections, through her heavily militarized systematic perpetration of political violence in Sanyati. Though relative peace prevailed in Sanyati during the campaign period of the 29 March harmonized elections, there was a dramatic turn of events soon after the results were announced. Fungai Chaderopa who had previously feigned a motherly love towards all the people of Sanyati turned around to devour them.
MDC activists who were unfortunate enough to have been captured and hauled before Chaderopa and her gang of torture tacticians have heart rending stories to tell. Fungai Chaderopa’s team of torturers consisted of Inspector Chiremba (ZRP Sanyati), Constable Magwaza (ZRP Sanyati), Captain Mutodi (ZNA ), councilor Isaac Muchekeni, Don Dube (ZNA), councilor Muteshe, Hilda Jonasi, Choga, Maskot Mapute and Frank Munjugwe. This team was in command of hordes of local Zanu PF youth gangs of marauders. These youths were used to flush out and capture all known MDC supporters and those who had served as polling agents in March 29, 2008 elections. These groups of Zanu PF militia had their own ways of punishing the enemy (MDC supporters), but the victim’s real ordeal would begin once they had been delivered to the MP and her military experts.
What really made Chaderopa’s mode of operation really effective and unique compared to other Constituencies was that she actually had a feel of the victims herself. Chaderopa working in cahoots with the ZRP officer in charge of Sanyati police station unlawfully detained MDC supporters in 2008, for periods ranging from three days to 2 weeks without charge. These people were tortured daily and sometimes denied food during their detention.
A major share of Victims of political violence in the Sanyati Constituency have reported the presence of uniformed police officers at scenes of abduction and torture, a joint operation of armed ZRP officers in uniform and Zanu PF youths has not been as widely reported in any other areas as has been the case with Sanyati. Many of the MDC supporters abducted in Sanyati by the police always found themselves locked up in Ngezi / Kadoma Prisons, their cases having been fast tracked through the magistrates courts in Kadoma. The Victims Invariably facing charges ranging from half truths and whole lies preferred on them by the arresting details who are reportedly Zanu PF activists. It appears starving her prisoners was Chaderopa’s favorite torture technique as would be substantiated by the victims accounts of their terrible moments at the hands of Fungai Chaderopa and gang.
June 2, 2008
Xxx was forcibly taken from his home on 2 June 2008 by a group of Zanu PF youths in the company of Captain Mutodi. They dragged him to Sanyati Council premises where a meeting of Zanu PF supporters was in progress. He was forced to confess that he was an MDC activist whilst he is a village head. They also wanted to know why his daughters where not attending Zanu PF meetings. Since his abduction on 2 June 2008 he had a torrid time when he was put at the mercy of the soldiers and the Zanu PF militia, as he was shuffled daily from one Zanu PF rally to the next confessing his sin of supporting MDC when he is a village head. He was denied food and water during his trying times, they tortured him from morning till the evening. He noted that he was humiliated before the young boys and girls, before all those women and men who respected him, he was so overcome with the pain that he used to openly shed tears at these meetings. He was released on 22 June 2008 after Chaderopa and the army units had completed addressing rallies in Sanyati.
June 7, 2008
Xxx was taken from home on 7 June 2008 by armed soldiers in uniform. They were using a police truck that took him to Arda Estates in Sanyati. At Arda he found MP Chaderopa waiting for them, he was heavily assaulted by members of the army with Don Dube leading the assault. He was warned against seeking medical help for they would kill anyone who dared treat him. After the soldiers had satisfied themselves that he had been punished enough they surrendered him to ZRP Sanyati who detained him for four days without food. xxx notes that the soldiers who were abducting and assaulting people in Sanyati had come into the constituency under the guise of Operation Maguta (an Army agricultural Inputs Supply Programme) but their main objective was to hunt down and punish all MDC activists.
June 22, 2008
On 22 June 2008, Zanu Pf youths abducted xxx a known MDC activist from his home. On arrival at xxx homestead the Zanu PF youths and war veterans accused him of supporting the MDC and changing the political fortunes of Zanu PF in Sanyati in favor of Tsvangirai, he also had another case to answer that of failing to attend Zanu PF meetings called for by Chaderopa. They then on the spot vented their anger on him, they worked him over with his wife and children watching. While the psychopaths concentrated on the assault, the wife managed to sneak away with the children before they had turned their attention on her. They then dragged him and handed him over to Fungai Chaderopa and her troops. He was bundled into their vehicle and taken to a torture base set up at the ARDA estate in Sanyati.
At the base, Simon was subjected to a severe bout of torture, which included heavy and thorough beatings using wooden hoe handles, open hands, fists, booted feet and baton sticks, punctuated by sessions of cold water boarding. The beatings lasted a whole night of torment from which he sustained serious injuries to the buttocks, back and all over the body and suffered a fractured right wrist. He was released into the hands of ZRP Sanyati who detained him for four days without food, after which they set him free without any charges. xxx has not fully recovered from the injuries and trauma more than a year after the attack.
June 23, 2008
On 23 June 2008, xxx was taken from home by a band of militia, Zanu PF youths and War veterans. They took him to their local torture base at Geja Clinic, where unfortunately for him MP Fungai Chaderopa and her unit had visited on their routine supervisory round. xxx was immediately taken through paces of political reorientation sessions, which included torture and assaults with Fungai Chaderopa physically participating in the whipping and punching. His ordeal lasted for twelve hours during which time Chaderopa made him sing chimurenga songs on his own and dance to the melodies, whilst chanting Zanu PF slogans. xxx described Chaderopa as a much more ruthless master and her beatings too severe than the military men in her company. She issued orders that the prisoners would not be given any food until their release.
June 23, 2008
On 23 June 2008 , a physically disadvantaged wheel chair bound xx was hauled before Fungai Chaderopa. His crime was supporting the MDC and its leader Morgan Tsvangirai, an inexcusable crime ( according to Chaderopa), that called for a deterrent punishment to serve as an example to would be offenders. She pushed and shoved him around in his already broken down wheel chair. Though he was lucky in that he was not beaten up as is the Zanu PF militia tradition, he was denied food and water for the whole day until his release the following day his wheel chair was further damaged during the interrogation.
June 23, 2008
An MDC councilor candidate xxx was abducted from her home in Ndava village by a group of 20 Zanu PF youths on 23 June 2008 . The youths told her that she had to go with them because the elders where waiting for her. They harassed her as they pushed her to Geja Clinic where a large crowd had been gathered. Fungai Chaderopa, Councillor Isaac Muchekeni , Captain Mutodi and some armed ZNA military personnel in uniform interrogated her for the whole day. They wanted to extract from her all information about the operations of the MDC in the area. She was denied food and water through out the day, she was only released later in the evening the same day. They stressed on her that they would come back for her after the 27th of June election results. The soldiers warned her for her continued support of the MDC, stressing that it is Zanu PF only that all people should support. Supporting the MDC is not permissible. xxx reports that she was highly traumatized by this incident.