By Patson Dzamara
17 months since the abduction of pro-democracy activist Itai Dzamara, his brother Patson Dzamara writes an emotional and hearty piece on Khuluma Afrika.
Dear Itai, I am aware you cannot read this, or may not read this, yet confident that in silence, I risk planting a live bomb in the depth of the psyche, unwaveringly assured that the spirit of your inspiration is an equally potent listener.
I am clobbered under a multitude of emotions as I write this letter to you Itai. I can’t believe that it’s now 17 months since the day you were abducted by state security agents. 17 long, cold, dark, and lonely months.
A lot has transpired since the 9th of March, 2015, the day you were morbidly snatched from us by evil men and women.
They have learnt in that time, those that took you, that they may have abducted your physical being, but your spirit, like that of Nehanda Nyakasikana, is too much, too big to be contained.
But its been bitter sweet my brother. The strength of your spirit is inspiring, but it is a reminder of the hollow gap left by your absence.
We all miss you so much, especially your wife Sheffra, your kids, Nokutenda and Nenyasha.
Mom and dad have also been affected by your continued forced disappearance although they have shown great strength and courage during this trying period.
Your son Nokutenda is doing well in school. His grades have improved. It seems as though he inherited your inquisitive trait. He is always seeking to derive meaning from many things, especially your absence. Your daughter Nenyasha is now in preschool and she is enjoying the new experience.
Sheffra, your wife remains hopeful. She has radiated a great deal of maturity and forbearance in your absence. Despite the emotional challenges she grapples with daily, she continues to surprise us by her strength.
The Occupy Africa Unity Square team is still pushing ahead. The work you started has inspired many Zimbabweans to speak out and act against the decadence our nation finds itself in. As the quest for a better Zimbabwe continues, more movements have emerged, notably #ThisFlag and #Tajamuka. I hope your selfless and resolute stance against Mugabe and his ZANU PF’s leadership failure, misrule and oppression will continue to inspire us on this journey.
Itai, as has always been our norm, we will not give up the fight for the truth regarding what they did to you. Slowly but surely, we are making headway and we shall continue to dig deeper. My staunch stance regarding your missing has presented me a marked man but I am not at all moved.
Ever since your abduction, most of the things you projected have been unfolding into reality. You will be shocked to realise how you were inspired to see into the future.
A lot of theories have been promulgated regarding your missing. Some suggest that this was an orchestrated move in order for you to gain political mileage. Others suggest that even myself has a hand in your missing.
I do not pay attention to that frivolity and hogwash because I know that you were taken by state security agents, particularly the military intelligence. God is watching. The truth shall come out and they will answer for what they did to you, soon.
We still look forward to being with you my brother. We love and we miss you greatly. Even as tears engulf my tears right now, I want to tell you that I am proud of you.
You took an unusual but necessary stand. Caring less for your comfort and security, you said what had to be said, you did what had to be done. You are a true hero.
I learnt the true meaning of leadership from you and I know I am becoming a better leader through all this. You will forever remain my and many other people’s inspiration.
Always your brother, Patson Dzamara
- Dr Patson Dzamara is a pro-democracy activist, and a campaigner against enforced disappearances. His brother Itai, of similar inclinations was abducted by suspected state agents. Article appears on Khuluma Afrika.