#July 31 protest organiser, Jacob Ngarivhume has spoken about his experiences during his 43-day detention, first at Harare remand prison and after he was transferred to Chikurubi Maximum Prison.
The Transform Zimbabwe (TZ) leader said he, alongside investigative journalist Hopewell Chin’ono, were transferred to Chikurubi because authorities were angered by MDC Alliance Nelson Chamisa’s visit.
Despite being in leg chains whenever they would their cells, Ngarivhume reckons that life was a bit tolerable at Chikurubi that at Harare remand prison. He said:
At Harare Remand Prison, there were no toilets, and I was eating one meal a day, food from my wife and then try to beg for a toilet at the reception. Half the time, they (officials) would refuse.
But at Chikurubi, we had easier access to toilets and now l was eating two meals a day one, in the morning and one in the evening, which was at 2 pm and from 3 pm you must be in your blankets.
The other advantage there was that there were few lice as compared to Harare Remand Prison.
The former MDC Alliance principal said he shared a cell with 19 other inmates at Chikurubi and about four of them were serving over 106 years, 108 and 115 years.
Ngarivhume said he was amazed by the inmates’ generosity as they were the people who looked after their food and arranged water for them to bath. He said:
In my cell, half the people were serving life sentences and about four were serving over 106 years, 108 and 115 years. So, we were living with convicted criminals, but again there had to take care of us.
These are the people who looked after our food, these are prison people who had no value in society, people that the society had rejected.
Ngarivhume was arrested on 20 July and charged with violence incitement against the government.
He was granted ZWL$50 000 bail by High Court judge Siyabona Musithu on Wednesday and ordered to surrender his passport and report to the police three times a week.