A snake reportedly slithered into a prison cell holding MDC Alliance youth leaders Joanna Mamombe and Cecilia Chimbiri at Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison on Sunday.
According to respected journalist Violet Gonda, Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPCS) guards took a long time to react even though the MDC Alliance duo screamed for help.
Gonda said the prison guards initially said they were waiting for officials from the Zimbabwe Wildlife Management Authority (Zimparks) to come and take away the reptile.
Mamombe and Chimbiri were later moved out of the cell and taken to another cell holding inmates infected with the coronavirus. Said Gonda via Twitter:
A snake crawled into opposition activists [Joana Mamombe] [and] [Cecilia Chimbiri]’s prison cell at Chikurubi yesterday. [Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights]’s [Roselyn Hanzi] confirmed this.
Reports say they screamed for help but guards took their time. Said they were waiting for National Parks!
Later they were transferred to a cell with COVID infected inmates [and] back to the same cell with holes.
These women have suffered greatly. To watch them go through this again is traumatising.
This is a violent assault on their mental health. Nobody deserves to be treated so shabbily.
Mamombe and Chimbiri were last week denied bail by magistrate Vongai Muchuchuti-Guwiriro who remanded them to 23 March.
They were arrested on 5 March after they held a Press conference at the Harare Magistrates Court in protest over the arrest of MDC Alliance committee member, Makomborero Haruziviishe.