12 year old dies after suspected arson attack in Headlands

The burnt out hut in the Headlands where Christpower Maisiri died

By Tichaona Sibanda
25 February 2013

Christpower Maisiri, the 12 year-old boy who died in a suspected arson attack on Saturday in Headlands is said to have survived two similar attacks.

Christpower, the son of MDC-T official Shepherd Maisiri, is expected to be buried on Thursday and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has indicated he will attend the burial ceremony.

MDC-T secretary-general Tendai Biti told journalists in Harare Monday the party will approach SADC to deal with the upsurge in violence in the country in recent weeks.

The perpetrators of the attack are believed to be the senior Maisiri’s political enemies in the area, who significantly include senior ZANU PF cabinet member, Didymus Mutasa.

Shepherd Maisiri told SW Radio Africa on Monday that his son was born in hiding “on a mountain” after his wife fled their homestead when it was burnt down in 2000. Maisiri is the local deputy organising secretary of the MDC-T in Headlands.

He said his wife was heavily pregnant when on the 2nd of June 2000 the homestead was attacked and burnt to the ground. Owing to the trauma of having to flee during the night, she went into labour and delivered Chrispower prematurely.

In 2008 Maisiri’s wife was raped by Lovemore Manenji, a ZANU PF activist who during the same incident broke the boy’s leg. Manenji is serving a 65-year jail term after he was convicted for the crime. Maisiri claims it took the police almost two years to investigate the case because of Manenji’s powerful links to ZANU PF officials, especially to Mutasa.

Almost a year later on 29th September 2009, the hut Christpower was sleeping in was burnt down. The boy managed to escape but suffered burns on his back.

On 12th November 2010 he again received burns to his buttocks after another hut he was sleeping in was torched by assailants thought to be ZANU PF cadres. This time he escaped before the roof collapsed. After this Maisiri took his son for counselling sessions because he had been so traumatised that he had trouble communicating.

In this most recent attack on Saturday at midnight, four of Christpower’s siblings survived after an elder brother sleeping in another hut close by smashed the door open and rescued them.

Maisiri claims he has been the main target of all the arson attacks. In total he said, there have been nine attacks on him and his family since 2000, which he believes is because of his activities on behalf of the MDC-T in the Headlands. Maisiri said: “Mutasa is my greatest enemy and this man has made my life miserable here in Headlands. I don’t have any faith in the police doing their work properly. I’m a marked man in this place.”

Maisiri went on to elaborate about the attack that occurred on Saturday night: “Last Friday, I was threatened by Gilbert Makura and Isaac Dhogo that they were going to finish me off and barely 24 hours later my homestead is attacked again and this time my son dies in the inferno. It is clear who the culprits are and I’ve told the police all the names.”

At the time his hut was set ablaze on Saturday, Maisiri had gone to Charenga in ward 7 of headlands on a campaign trail. He was alerted to of the disturbances by one of his family members. But by the time he returned home, Christpower had already died in the blaze.

It took police from the Inyati Mine station 19 hours to attend to the scene of crime. Maisiri explained that no arrests have ever been made in the nine times that his homestead has been attacked.

Despite the attacks and fear that Mutasa is behind them, Maisiri is still intending to contest against ZANU PF in the forthcoming parliamentary elections.

Explaining his determination Maisiri says, “My son has died because of politics. His death will not be in vain. Those that have committed this crime will one day pay but for now I want to give my son a decent burial and I’m happy that our party leader Morgan Tsvangirai said he will attend the burial on Thursday.”



19 Responsesto “12 year old dies after suspected arson attack in Headlands”

  1. Ras says:

    And Tsvangirai is going around telling the world that there is no more violence in Zimbabwe

  2. wilbert_mukori says:

    Prime Minister Tsvangirai would you please stop lying about there being
    no violence in these elections, for we are already in the elections process.
    Please tell the people the truth that you failed to get the agreed GPA reforms
    implemented and that until and unless they are implemented the wanton violence of 2008 will be repeated.

    You lying that there will be no violence to get people to vote yes in the referendum is compounding your failure in that it is misleading the people
    and drawing into this Mugabe death trap. If people knew the truth about your
    failure to implement the reforms and that by voting no in the referendum they
    will force the reforms to be implemented and the elections will be delayed
    until the reforms are implemented and thus avoid a repeat of the wanton
    violence of 2008.

    This tragic death of Christpower Maisiri, burnt to death – a gruesome death – is to your account Mr. Prime Minister for you having failed to get the
    reforms implemented.

    All politically motivated death after the referendum, if the yes vote win the day, will be to your account Mr Prime Minister for lying that there would be no violence!

    Please, please Mr. Prime Minister spare the nation of your platitudes and pontifications of this young boy being a “national hero”. He was just an ordinary 12 year old boy whose life was brutally cut short to gratify Mugabe’s continued hold on power. The death could and should have been avoided were it not for your; you Mr. Prime Minister, breathe taking political incompetence.

  3. super mondo says:

    it appears to be an arson attack. a child has been murdered.is this an attempt to anger people into retaliation to start civil conflict.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Truelly speaking, Didymus Mutasa is a true diabolic man, a satanist, killer, murderer. How can he cause death to such a young man ? Everything has its own ending, tichaona kwavanosvika nekuuraya vanhu uku kwavanoita. ZANU(PF) is a party of murderers truelly. How can we have free and fair elections in such sitiatuons. Mr. Tsvangirai need to tell the truth about the political situation in Zimbabwe when talking to other leaders, eg. He was telling former Ghana leader Jerry Rawlings that political situation in our country is stable. Sure we need to come out and tell the whole world the truth about this dangerous political creature ZANU(PF) and Mugabe `s satanic activities.

  5. ExZ says:

    Utterly Savage………….

  6. Domingos Rui says:

    Didymus Mutasa, the Mugabe minister is a known war lord in this part of Manicaland, I mean all districts surrounding Rusape.

    • munzwa says:

      And who controls mutasa??

      • GBZ says:

        satan of course!… and his satanic demonic forces, the same peron who controls mugabe,zpf and suporters who murder,rape, torture, and terrorise innocent people…. This is the same god who annointed mugabe, the brave man who sits in the protection of dozens of body gaurds, and has bomb proof cars. The annointed of satan….who else… It is time for us to put on the real Armour of God….Ephesians 6

        The Armor of God

        10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

        18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mysteryof the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

        • Chimbwidos Warvets says:

          There comes the godly man, a man who still believes and lives in medieval age and who does not understand that the bible is one of the greatest deceptions ever known to mankind.

  7. conrad musasa says:

    may Maisiri ‘ son rest in peace

  8. Mukanya waSvosve says:

    It is already past the time PM Tsvangirai should be see to be taking a much tougher stance than mere rhetoric and appearing at the burial. Peoples’ lives have been scarificed and he continues to betray the struggle because he is now on the gravy train. The MDC is not even doing anything about ensuring that the majority of people are allowed to register as voters

  9. Chimbwidos Warvets says:

    Stop this nonsense, all of you. If you do not know what is going on, your best bet is to shut up and stop behaving like the SW Radio political analyst, Wilbert Mukori, who just writes nonsense without carrying out a proper analysis of the situation.
    This is a serious matter that is receiving the attention of the law enforcement agencies of Zimbabwe. Until such time, criminal investigations have been conducted and evidence is gathered that points to the real culprits, it is pretty immature for anybody to make any silly insinuations about this crime. Just be patient all of you, including our famous political analyst Wilbert and let the law take its course. That is what logical and rational people do, guys.

    • Common Sense says:

      Warvet, when you say “This is a serious matter that is receiving the attention of the law
      enforcement agencies of Zimbabwe. Until such time, criminal
      investigations have been conducted and evidence is gathered that points
      to the real culprits,”..

      Which part of the ‘this has happened countless time before since 2000 and the police have done nothing’ did you miss. The police are doing nothing here, it says nowhere in the report that they are.

      So stop behaving like the law is following its course

      • Chimbwidos Warvets says:

        Fortunately or is it unfortunately, they say you only have to cut your cloth according to your size, Common Sense. It is well known that the arms of justice in Zimbabwe really move very slowly or not at all unlike other countries where a crime of this nature receives urgent attention which it truly deserves, but that is what we have in Zimbabwe, mate. It is unfortunate, but there you are mate. All I can say is it is too early to condemn them. Let us give them a chance because they have a responsibility.

    • Yepec says:

      Yes, people will, “Just be patient …”, if you tell us who did it? Your people and the country for which you fought to exploit are being decimated, you fool of a mercenary.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yuo need to stop your nonsense, you yourself. You need to shut up because you don`t know what is going on in Zimbabwe. Ask me anything happening here because I witness what is going on not you barking from outside our country. Usada kutitaridza ufuza hwako mhani.

  10. GBZ says:

    There is a huge significance in the childs name, “Christpower”….Watch! Already the US have made a statement on this childs death.

    • Chimbwidos Warvets says:

      Once again you have been protected from the onslaught of Chimbwidos Warvets for talking nonsense. Several of my posts in response to this one of yours have been deleted. Have you got journalists at SW Radio Africa whose business is to give you protection? You must be a very lucky guy.

      • Alex Bell says:

        How many times must we say it? We do not delete posts. Posts with foul language are automatically deleted. Stop misleading people.

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