Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi on Thursday barred CCC president Nelson Chamisa from meeting jailed MPs Job Sikhala and Godfrey Sithole and the other party activists from the Nyatsime area who are currently detained at Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison.
Chamisa visited the prison on Thursday morning and was made to wait for three hours before he was informed by prison authorities that he could not see his colleagues.
Speaking to reporters, Chamisa said prison authorities said they had received instructions from Ziyambi to bar him from seeing Sikhala and the other CCC activists. Said Chamisa:
It’s so disheartening to know that just after we had been made to wait for three hours, we were then told that we can now enter to be able to see our colleagues.
We were then invited to the office of the Officer in Charge of prisons Mr. Hukurume. He indicated to us that it is unfortunate that we are not able to see Honourable Job Sikhala and the other Nyatsime colleagues, our citizen heroes because the Minister of Justice has instructed that we can’t see them.
We were surprised because they had made us wait for almost two, three hours. You can bear witness and testimony to that.
But all of a sudden they said they had received an instruction that you cannot see all your colleagues. So we are not able to see them.
It is an embarrassment, it is harassment, and it is unacceptable that we have this kind of abuse of the law.
Last week, the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPSC) said Chamisa was free to visit his colleagues at Chikurubi, and today’s events came as a surprise to the opposition leader.
MDC-T leader Douglas Mwonzora was recently given permission by ZPCS to visit Sikhala and Sithole but the duo allegedly refused to meet him.
Sikhala, Sithole, and the other 14 CCC activists from Nyatsime have been in pre-trial detention since June on charges ranging from inciting violence to public violence.