HARARE – Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa says he has written several times to President Emmerson Mnangagwa importuning the state leader to abandon his vindictive treatment of the opposition politician as this was a “national embarrassment”.
Chamisa revealed this during a media conference in Harare Thursday.
Sikhala was arrested June last year for alleged violence incitement during the tense funeral wake of slain CCC activist Moreblessing Ali in Nyatsime, a community just outside Chitungwiza town.
The veteran legislator, commonly described as a political prisoner by his party and rights defenders, has seen his many attempts to secure his release on bail foiled by the courts.
The opposition claims the courts are being coached by the Zanu PF led government to deny him his freedom.
Chamisa described the continued incarceration of the firebrand politician as an “international and national embarrassment” he said exposed the current government’s unwillingness to uphold human rights.
“In terms of the nation, you would be aware of the human rights situation in the country.
“Our situation has worsened. Look at the arrest of our brother Job Sikhala. It’s almost a year in prison without bail.
“That tells you the nation is rotten; he committed no offence. Sikhala is innocent but they have already judged him guilty without any trial.
“Tells you how sick we are, and I may want to tell the nation that I even have made efforts to write severally to Mr Mnangagwa to say deal with the Sikhala issue.
“It’s embarrassing us internationally and nationally. He (Mnangagwa) has chosen not to respond,” he said.
Turning to rampant drug abuse in the country, Chamisa said the rot was a direct manifestation of poor leadership under Zanu PF rule.
“Our young citizens are severely affected by the problem of drugs that are only, but a symptom of a governance problem, a deeper problem and we must address this serious systemic problem of poverty, a broken nation and dysfunctional society.
“But there are also problems that are exacerbated by the head, the leadership; a fish rots from the head.
“We know that the drug cartels are being supported, camouflaged and even covered, fueled and supported by those who are in leadership and they must be exposed,” said the opposition chief.