The Sunday Mail
They say time heals even the deepest of scars, but not for Bishop Lazarus.
And they say everything — absolutely everything and anything — has a price, but not this man of scripture and prayer.
Even as seconds melt into hours, days and weeks, the image of a wailing, bulbous Gonyeti disorientedly walking the streets of Crowborough North — where we are told she had been tortured and dumped — in her birthday suit is too forbidding to envision, even for perverts. Indeed, it is too traumatic and searing to the mind’s eye.
Thankfully and rather fortuitously, in a world and society where taking photos and tweeting — rather than helping — has become second nature, no one managed to capture and share what would have been graphically distressing images in so many different ways.
All those responsible for this dastardly and cowardly act, which ironically has made the struggling comedienne more famous than her supposedly “comic” skits, need prayers — powerful prayers — for they risk being barbecued in the eternal fires of Hell.
We hope law enforcement agents will account for these cash-flush musketeers, who now sit in the temporary good graces of America.
The truth has a way of eventually making itself known.
Luke 8:17 assures us that: “For nothing is concealed that won’t be revealed, and nothing hidden that won’t be made known and come to light.”
Our elders have always reminded us that you cannot hide horned loot (rine manyanga hariputirwe); it always has a way of announcing itself to prying investigators.
But Bishop Lazi also prays that they will be closure to the egregious cases, where soldiers purportedly raped our women and girls in the aftermath of the violent demonstrations in January this year.
Curiously, eight months down the line, the supposed victims of these carelessly reckless crimes have remained nameless, faceless and spineless.
The Guardian told us “scores of girls and women” were raped, while the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) actually managed to interview six women “at a safe house” in the capital.
But all these victims — coincidentally reported in these British publications — have not yet been accounted for.
It is like they inconveniently vanished from the face of the earth.
Maybe, there is a Bermuda Triangle in Zimbabwe, where things just vanish to nothingness without a trace.
With non-governmental organisations (NGOs) crawling over every square inch and corner of this country, this would sound incredible, if not downright fanciful.
Maybe, we should ask the little-known Women’s Academy for Leadership of Political Excellence (Walpe), which put up a farcical show in January by urging people to wear black in solidarity with the “raped” women.
As Bishop Lazi said last week, if it is not done for the photo opportunities (photo ops), it is dramatised for social media, particularly Twitter.
So, it was not surprising that this campaign, too, had its fair share of twitter hashtag condiments: #OurBodiesNotWarZones, #SheSpeaksOut, #InjureOneInjureAll and #ShutDownAtrocities.
Why are we all pretending as if this did not happen?
Or did it?
They say lies, like Usain Bolt, run short sprints, while the truth, like Haile Gabre-Selassie, runs marathons.
Genesis of Abductions
And now, in the aftermath of the abortive August 16 protests, abductions are now the buzzword.
It seems everyone else, except the Bishop of course, is being abducted, and all this is being played out on Twitter, where apparently the world is just a hashtag or tag away.
All these heinous crimes — beatings, torture, rape and now abductions — seem to always happen after protests organised by the MDC-Alliance.
Experience has taught this man of the cloth not to believe in coincidences: if it happens once, it is probably a mistake; if it happens twice, it might be a coincidence; but if it happens thrice, it is definitely a pattern.
Dear reader, I want you to follow closely the use of the word abduction, especially in Zimbabwe’s recent past.
No-one fond of drama would forget how Tendai Biti desperately kicked and screamed — literally— when apprehended by security agents while trying to make a run for Zambia last year when he was being sought for allegedly violating the Electoral Act.
One would have sworn that the man-child caught on video desperately slithering and writhing on the ground to vainly loosen the vice-grip of determined security agents is not the same Biti who sounds macho today in front of microphones and cameras.
But an interesting narrative developed after the spectacle: we were told that Biti had been abducted.
Earlier, before all this drama at the border post, we were also told by our private press that Biti’s younger brother “had been abducted after dropping his wife and children at an undisclosed location”.
The same newsmen, however, failed to tell us what later happened to this abducted individual.
We can only hope that he too did not just evaporate from the face of the earth.
And then, there is the November 10 2018 incident involving Nelson Chamisa, which, again, we were told was an abduction attempt.
Bishop Lazi has never witnessed an abduction, but the video of the incident is perhaps the most bizarre abduction attempt you will ever find.
In that fleeting footage, the abductors seemingly leave the abductee outside the vehicle and inexplicably try to search for something in the car, and then the abductee — after a moment of hesitation — seems to shove effortlessly through the abductors to enter the same vehicle, which subsequently drives off at speed.
The gravelly commentary from a witness, who seemingly knew the script of the abduction, is all that we are left with to remind us that the befuddling footage we had just witnessed was an abduction attempt.
Argh! This world so.
And on July 31 this year, we are also told that after the filming of a programme involving political parties — Zanu-PF, MDC-Alliance and National Patriotic Front (NPF) — by Zimpapers Television Network (ZTN) at Rainbow Towers, the abductors were back again, and despite the heavy presence of witnesses, unabashedly tried to abduct the MDC-Alliance officials, who included Obey Sithole and Jacob Mafume.
In all these running scripts, the abductors always failed.
It was only after the failed August 16 demonstrations that they began to succeed.
And who the hell abducts a comedienne and tries to kidnap political clowns?
To what end?
If you interrogate these questions, you begin to move closer to the truth and unmasking the real culprits.
Fortunately, the State can see through the shadows.
It can definitely see the characters in the MDC-Alliance — two prominent officials to be exact — who are dishing out US dollars like confetti; all this behind Chamisa’s back.
It can also see the actions of a SA-based self-exiled businessman, who now seems of unsound mind.
And these are the real characters staging the current show.
Where they are getting the green-backs, one can only guess.
And, yes, you guessed right: the same shebeen visitors.
Well, it seems every MDC-Alliance activist now comes with a price tag.
They can do anything for money, and do not underestimate its influence.
In the Bible, it is pitted with God himself. Matthew 6:24 tells us: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”
As always, money will be the MDC-Alliance’s greatest undoing.
And as they say, there is no honour among thieves; you will see how they will tear each other apart before 2023.