Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
MDC Alliance president Mr Nelson Chamisa’s visit to jailed Chief Ndiweni at Khami Prison Complex at the weekend has divided the opposition party with some members expressing reservations.
Mr Chamisa, on Saturday, visited Chief Ndiweni who was recently jailed for 18 months for malicious damage to property, while his co-accused were sentenced to serve community service.
Party insiders yesterday said Mr Chamisa’s visit had caused a rift among MDC Alliance leaders especially national chairperson, Ms Thabitha Khumalo, who at the weekend is said to have expressed disappointment that no national leader visited her while she was in police cells recently.
Ms Khumalo, Senator Helen Zivira Mpofu and five others were two weeks ago arrested while distributing fliers and mobilising residents in Nkulumane suburb for a demonstration which police later prohibited.
The source said Ms Khumalo indirectly demanded that Mr Chamisa among other national party leaders should show similar homage to all the party members when arrested.
“It seems she was not amused by Chamisa’s visit to Chief Ndiweni at the Khami Prison Complex over the weekend when no senior party member visited them after they were arrested in Bulawayo. She said why would party president Chamisa visit Chief Ndiweni when party members are left to rot in police cells with no emotional support from other national leaders. In essence she was questioning the loyalty of senior party members who did little for them when they were arrested,” said a source.
In addition to expressing unhappiness at the party leadership’s failure to support her while in custody, Ms Khumalo allegedly questioned why the party did not pay their bail as the money was released by an individual MDC Alliance sympathiser.
Ms Khumalo and crew were given each a $200 bail.
Contacted for comment, Ms Khumalo said:
“What do you want? Sufuna ukubhala itshebetshebe? Go to the people who told you and get a comment from them. Do not involve me in your issues, I don’t want to be involved.” — @nqotshili