POLITICAL activists associated with missing journalist Itai Dzamara claim their lives are in danger with state security agents constantly on their trail.
Four of the activists told a hastily arranged press briefing in Harare that they had noticed suspicious people some in vehicles with “phony number plates” trailing them in the past two weeks.
“I have for the last two weeks realised that some people have been following me,” said Steven Sibanda a youth leader in the opposition Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn party and member of the group Occupy Africa Unity Square (OAUS).
“At one time I was trailed from Eastlea to Warren Park, reported the issue to the police but I ended up as the criminal and was locked up overnight.”
Sibanda said he does not have confidence in the country’s police force and other security services given that Dzamara has not been heard from, a month after his alleged abduction.
Another activist Llloyd Masarirambi claimed that he had been trailed by a group of men in an Isuzu truck with incomplete registration plates.
“Around eight people in a truck and pretending to be plumbers have followed me all over town and I now fear for my life.
“We have alerted our attorneys at the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) because reporting to the police will not help. Our lives are in danger even from state agents,” said Masarirambi.
Acting OAUS spokesperson Dirk Frey reacted angrily to state media claims that Dzamara is in Botswana under direction from opposition groups.
“Those insinuations are a fabrication and downright malicious,” said Frey.
“They claim I organised Dzamara’s skipping the border into Botswana but even if you check my passport I have never been to that country.
“But we would like to make this very clear, we are mobilizing and we will act soon. There will be demonstration to force the state to return Dzamara to us as well as our original agenda of a democratic state.”
He added: “The harassment from the state has been incremental but it has not disrupted our plans because we have incorporated it as part of our programming.
“We are doing everything to safeguard the loves of our members”.
OAUS has been calling on President Robert Mugabe to step down, accusing the long-time Zimbabwean leader of failing to run the country.
The group embarked on a series of “demonstrations” including an attempt to occupy a public park in central Harare before Dzamara was abducted.