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Solitary confinement will not break me – Sikhala

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Solitary confinement will not break me – Sikhala

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BRILLIANT MUKARO
MIRROR REPORTER

HARARE – CCC leading figure and Zengeza Member of Parliament (MP), Job Sikhala who says that he is living in solitary confinement at Chikurubi Maximum Prison where he has been remanded for 11 months without bail told Harare magistrate Marehwanavo Gofa that no amount of persecution will break his resolve to fight against human rights abuses.
Presenting his mitigation on Wednesday just before his sentence on a charge for obstructing justice, Sikhala said he is living under harsh and cruel conditions in solitary confinement where he is kept in leg irons.
“My commitment and dedication to the national cause is a calling I will never abdicate, notwithstanding the persecution I suffer,” said Sikhala.
Magistrate Gofa pronounced Sikhala guilty as charged and gave him a six months’ sentence wholly suspended on condition that he pays US$600 fine within a week. The verdict and sentence however torched a storm among Zimbabweans who described it as repressive and a crackdown against dissent.
Sikhala could not go home however, after the option of a fine as he is facing a series of other charges.
Newsday described the conviction in a lead story as a “dark day for justice”.
Sikhala who was arrested after making a statement following the ruthless murder of Moreblessing Ali in Chitungwiza in June last year said justice is a value that he cherished and for which he is prepared to sacrifice for including staying in prison for as long as is necessary. He said he learned such values from the liberation struggle which he saw being fought when he was 8.
He said he is only 50 and people like Mandela stayed in prison for 27 years. He said his tormentors may win the battle but victory is always to be for the people.

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