Body Exhumations In Zim Continues Despite Court Ban

The Zimbabwe People’s Army veterans (ZIPRA) won a High Court ruling at in Bulawayo last week after they had argued that their members were also killed in the Mt Darwin area by the Ian Smith regime during the liberation struggle. High Court judge, Nicholas Mathonsi in his ruling said all exhumations that were being carried out by the Fallen Heroes Trust in Mt Darwin at Chimondo mine must be stoped immediately.
Radio VOP understands that despite the ruling bodies are still being exhumed for reburial at a mass grave that is being built by government workers next to the Chimondo mine. Chairperson of the Fallen Heroes Trust, Goerge Rutanhire refused to comment but referred all the questions to the Minister of Home Affairs, Kembo Mohadi.
He said the bodies that are being exhumed are being carried out by the government for reburial at the mass grave to be built next to the shrine.
“Our organisation is no longer carrying out the exhumations. What I understand is that the government will rebury the bodies that we exhumed at the mass grave that is being built next to the mine,” Rutanhire said.
However, a source who visited the Chibondo mine over the weekend said ‘exhumers’ were still at the site and were still carrying out the exhumations in an effort to bury the remains at the mass grave in contravention of the High Court order.
“The exhumations surprisingly are still going on. The people at the mine said they just want to clear all the remains of the bodies from the mine shaft for reburial at the mass grave hat is being constructed. But it is against the High Court order,” the source who requested anonymity said.
Political analysts have accused President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu (PF) party of using the exhumations of the bodies in Mt Darwin to score political marks on the political field. Zanu (PF) officials were witnessed sloganeering at the Chimondo mine while officials of the Fallen Heroes Trust have been telling visitors that Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai ‘will never rule Zimbabwe.’
Tsvangirai has condemned the way the exhumations were being carried out saying the people who were carrying out the exhumations were doing it for ‘cheap’ political scores adding that the dead were not being respected.