Now Daily Investigation|
A stone has finally been laid at the grave of slain Movement for Democratic Change activist and Silveira House researcher, Munhumeso Manenji.
The death of Manenji in a hit and run motorcycle accident in Harare in 2 000 sparked outrage, with his family and MDC members accusing Charles Majange, the Zanu PF MP for Chivi North, of organising the hit. Majange had earlier threatened to shoot Manenji after the ex-University of Zimbabwe psychology student started campaigning for the same parliamentary seat under an MDC ticket.
However, after a decade of futile investigations, the family has decided to break with the past by forgiving the unknown killers and sealing the prominent activist’s final resting place in Chivi with an expensive gravestone.
“We’ve had to accept that it was probably an accident just in order to move on, but I still have many questions,” said Amma Muyale, Manenji’s former lover, who is now married to the slain activist’s brother Tafara and has a son named after him.
Muyale, a Kenyan, told Now Daily in 2011 that Manenji had a deep gush on his forehead but no other visible serious injuries consistent with a fall from a speeding bike.
Muyale also revealed that Manenji was agitated in the final week of his life and was desperate to see his brother David, but never had the chance.
Manenji, who wrote an anonymous column for the Catholic magazine Moto, told Now Daily before he died that he believed Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe wanted him dead for his critical writings.
“I met Mugabe at a function and I was shocked when greeted me by name and told me that he was aware of my writings. He told me that he thought I was very intelligent but the whole experience left me shell-shocked,” said Manenji, who commented extensively about Mugabe’s excesses in local and foreign publications and broadcasts on behalf of Silveira House, a radical Catholic think tank.
Manenji planned to flee to the United States days before he was found murdered.
Central Intelligence Organisation sources confirmed that Manenji was a marked man.
Former Silveira House director, Father Brian McGarry declined to speculate on the possible causes of his former top researcher’s death.