Exiled Matabeleland Liberation Organisation leader Paul Siwela has revealed that he recently sneaked back into the country to bury his father in Bulawayo.
Siwela escaped Zimbabwe in 2013 after he was charged with treason alongside war veterans John Gazi and Charles Thomas after they distributed fliers calling for the secession of Matabeleland.
Gazi and Thomas have since been acquitted of the charges by the High Court, but Siwela remains holed up in an unknown country.
He said he had to return to the country last week to bury his 90 year-old father King Siwela, who died on Monday.
“Yes it’s true that my father has passed on in Bulawayo. He was 90 years old and nine months and is survived by four children and 18 grandchildren as well as eight great grandchildren,” he said.
Siwela said he had last seen his father in August in neighbouring South Africa where he had gone for treatment.
“I am pleased that I have lived up to 57 years having my dad and was last with him in August 2019 when I had taken him for medical attention to South Africa,” he said.
Siwela confirmed that they had buried his father in Bulawayo on Thursday.
His mother died in 2016 and he could not return home to bury her as he feared for his life.
Former president Robert Mugabe’s government declared him a fugitive after he skipped the country in 2013.
Siwela says he still fears that he would be arrested if he returned to Zimbabwe as President Emmerson Mnangagwa was Justice minister when he was being persecuted.
At the time he was incarcerated for 90 days, with the state refusing to release him on bail on the grounds that he would continue with his subversive activities.
Siwela, who was one of the presidential candidates during the controversial 2002 elections, has in the past been a member of organisations that have been lobbying for the creation of a Mthwakazi State, carved out of the Midlands and Matabeleland provinces.
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Publish date : 2019-12-02 13:45:53