Is Sikhala going back to prison?

Many people are wondering about the fate of former Zengeza West MP, Job Sikhala, who has been found guilty of publishing falsehoods prejudicial to the state when he allegedly tweeted that a police officer fatally struck an infant with a baton.

The alleged crime dates back to 2021 and relates to a viral video of a woman holding a baby in one hand and clutching onto a police officer with the other claiming the cop had killed the infant.

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In a post in X this Wednesday, the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) said Sikhala was convicted by Harare Magistrate Feresi Chakanyuka for allegedly communicating falsehoods but did not state if Sikhala has been sentenced for the crime. Said ZLHR:

Magistrate Feresi Chakanyuka convicts former Zengeza West MP Hon. Job Sikhala for publishing falsehoods prejudicial to the state in a case in which he was arrested in 2021 for allegedly communicating falsehoods on X, when he allegedly tweeted that an infant had died on the spot in Harare after a Zimbabwe Republic Police officer had struck the baby with a truncheon.

Sikhala was in prison for almost two years before a judgement was made on a different case in which he got a wholly suspended jail term.

Former Mt Pleasant MP, Fadzayi Mahere was convicted of publishing falsehoods in April 2023 after she allegedly posted the same on video on X (formerly Twitter). She was fined US$500.

Amnesty International condemned Mahere’s conviction saying it was an assault on freedom of expression, and the government was using a non-existent law to prosecute her

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