Zimbabweans have expressed distaste at images of jailed opposition politician and former Member of Parliament Job Sikhala in leg irons while receiving treatment at a local hospital.
Sikhala is currently imprisoned for allegedly inciting public violence and public disorder, among a cocktail of charges. Yesterday, the High Court overturned his May conviction and sentence for obstruction of violence, declaring him not guilty.
Police arrested Sikhala on June 14, 2023, following the brutal murder of CCC activist Moreblessing Ali. He has been denied bail several times despite his deteriorating health and lack of evidence against him. He has spent more than 500 days in pre-trial detention.
Sikhala was accused of making a video that claimed that the ruling Zanu-PF party had killed Moreblessing Ali, a CCC activist, and of misleading the police investigations into the murder case. He denied the charges and challenged the splitting of the charges as a form of persecution.
Sikhala is diabetic, and throughout his pre-trial detention, he has had his health deteriorate. At one point, he was reportedly vomiting blood at Chikurubi Maximum Prison.
In October, his lawyer, Harrison Nkomo, told journalist Hopewell Chin’ono that he was passing stool with traces of blood after complaining of a rumbling tummy.
Today, Job Sikhala went for surgery to alleviate his illness. However, as he was lying on the hospital bed, prison officials fastened and chained his leg to the bed.
However, the surgery went well and his son expressed gratitude;
JOB WIWA SIKHALA undergone a surgery earlier today. I delightly inform you all that it auspiciously went well. He is rigidly strong and sends words of gratitude,greetings and love to everyone for your support We are deeply grateful for your steadfast support through your prayers!
Zimbos expressed anger at this.
“People who experienced the brazen cruelty from the Smith colonial regime shouldn’t subject their citizens to such colonial madness in 2023. The real liberators of Zimbabwe are probably dead or out of power.”
“Not sure why they want him to wear leg irons. Tichikura ndochataiti “Chifinhu” kuda kungokaurisa munhu chete. Dai Mwari vapindira murume uyu aburitswe mutirongo😪.”
“Haaaa but why akanyanya kutadziye nhai mwari havarambe vakanyarara one ☝️ day is one day.”