MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa has come under fire from his supporters in Chiredzi for neglecting a former Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services officer fired for supporting him.
Chamisa promised to include John Mahlabera in his security team when he was campaigning for the 2018 general elections, but has not honoured the pledge two years on.
The ex-prison guard is now living in a squalor in the small resort town of Kariba. Mahlabera, who was stationed at Chiredzi Prison, was dismissed on charges of using traitorous or disloyal words towards President Emmerson Mnangagwa in 2018.
During one of his campaign rallies held at Tshovani Stadium, Chiredzi on June 10, 2018 the youthful opposition leader praised Mahlabera’s bravery for taking Mnangagwa’s repressive government head-on.
He went on to parade him in front of his supporters and offered him a job as one of his security aides.
Mahlabera was accused of tweeting in favour of Chamisa on April 9, 2018.
He was also accused of undermining Mnangagwa and attending an MDC Alliance rally.
Part of Mahlabera’s charge sheet read: “He wrote the following words on his Twitter account, Come to Chiredzi my president, thus, showing loyalty to the opposition party president, thereby exhibiting disloyalty and disgraceful conduct to the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe.”
On the second count, he was found guilty of contravening section 3(46) of Prisons (Staff) (Disciplinary) Regulations 1984 after he attended Chamisa’s rally which was held in Chiredzi.
Mahlabera said he tried to follow up on the job offer through text messages.
But Chamisa only said “call”. He said several attempts to reach Chamisa were fruitless as his mobile number was no longer reachable.
But party deputy spokesperson Clifford Hlatywayo said: “We have lost contact with him and the other guy who was also victimised. If you get in touch with him, tell him to contact the mayor of Kariba. The mayor will then contact us so that we can see how best he can be helped.”