Dar es Salaam. A mother of one of the five missing Tanzanians told The Chanzo on Thursday that she has stopped counting on the Tanzanian law enforcement authorities to find her son’s whereabouts and instead she is resting her hope on God.
The mother’s son, Hemed Abbas, is one among the five men who had reportedly gone missing since December 26, 2021, and they have not been found since.
Others are Tawfiq Mohammed, Seif Swala, Edwin Kunambi and Rajab Mdowe.
“I hand him [Hemed Abbas] to God,” said Ms Naima Ndyanabo when she spoke with The Chanzo on Thursday. “I have stopped going to the police. I have chosen to rest my hope in God. I want to believe that He can help to bring my son back.”
Reports allege that the men were arrested by police on December 26, 2021, around the Kamata area in Kariakoo, while they were on their way to one of the beaches located in Kigamboni.
They were driving in a black Toyota IST before they were stopped and led to Central Police in downtown Dar es Salaam.
One of the men who were soon to go missing had sent out a message to a friend, reporting the arrest, adding that they were being taken to police central.
A case on the missing men has been filed at the Msimbazi police station in Kariakoo.
Dar es Salaam Special Zone Police Commander Jumanne Muliro told The Chanzo on Wednesday that it should go to his office and share whatever information it may have about the missing men with him.
Ms Ndyanabo said she decided to stop visiting police stations after a senior police officer at the Special Zone Office said to her that she “should stop crying, go back home, cook some ugali and eat.”
“I’m confused,” she told The Chanzo. “I cry and sleep all day. I keep praying that wherever he might be my son is okay and will come back to me while still alive.”
Felista Mauya is a director of empowerment and accountability with the Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC) who told The Chanzo on Thursday that the centre was aware of the reports and that they are looking into them.
“We are following up the reports to respective families as well as to the police,” she said. “We can say not much at this moment until our investigation team comes up with the report about the incident.”
Reacting to the incident on Wednesday, the leader of the opposition ACT-Wazalendo Zitto Kabwe called the mysterious disappearance of the men a “very critical issue.”
In a Twitter post, Zitto wrote: “The government has [a] responsibility to inform the public about this very critical issue. [Home Affairs] Minister Hamad Masauni and the police must meet these families [as soon as possible.”
Lukelo Francis is a Dar es Salaam-based The Chanzo’s correspondent. He is available at email@example.com.