By Costa Nkomo
FIREBRAND MDC Alliance deputy chairperson, Job Sikhala Sunday warned President Mnangagwa’s regime not to push him to the edge through continued detention of a party activist over a minor offence.
Terrence Manjengwa (26) has been detained for over 50 days without trial.
He was arrested outside the Harare Magistrates’ Court after leading a handful staunch Sikhala supporters in a brief protest demanding the release of the Zengeza West MP who was appearing before the same court.
Manjengwa, who clocked 50 days in jail on Sunday, has since been charged with criminal nuisance and is detained at Harare Remand Prison.
The Harare Magistrates’ Court denied him bail and his bid to regain his freedom through the High Court has been kept on hold for the past three weeks without a ruling.
Sikhala, also a lawyer, is now threatening unspecified action against Mnangagwa’s administration if the activist continued languishing in jail without trial.
“The nonsense of punishing people before trial must come to an end,” Sikhala told NewZimbabwe.com Sunday.
“How would a normal country with a properly functioning judiciary system honestly refuse an accused person bail for a charge of criminal nuisance.
“This must be brought to the world so that everything wrong with our state is exposed.”
Sikhala continued, “This is what is called shaming oneself, not what Terrence did.
“Release this young man as soon as possible. Otherwise I will spring from the slumber. I don’t give empty threats. It’s not part of my DNA.
“Release Terrence Manjengwa. Stop doing this kind of nonsense in our country. On Tuesday I am going to address a press conference concerning the abuse of this young man. Enough is enough.”
Sikhala said the prolonged detention of Manjengwa without trial was proof the judicial system in Zimbabwe has been captured.
“They arrested him (Manjengwa) for a charge of criminal nuisance. Since then, he has spent 50 days in remand prison with courts refusing to grant him bail on the grounds he shamed the State.
“So stupid are grounds for refusing him bail that people tend to question themselves whether Zimbabwe still has any judiciary to talk about. Does anyone need to shame a regime which is a shame for itself.”
Sikhala said he has since been supporting Manjengwa’s family with basic welfare needs including sending food to the activist in prison.
“I am taking care of the family’s household needs, rentals and food. I am also sending the young man food to prison and have been always checking on his welfare,” he said.