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Ali’s family blast ‘insensitive’ weekend mayhem

By Staff Reporter

THE family of slain Citizens’ Coalition for Change (CCC) activist, Moreblessing Ali, has come out guns blazing condemning factional violence that marred funeral proceedings at Zororo Park Cemetery in Chitungwiza on Saturday.

During the sombre event, one mourner accused former legislator Job Sikhala of sparking disunity in the opposition CCC saying, “Ibva pano Sikhala, wakatengesa (Leave this place immediately. You sold out the opposition struggle.”

In another incident, a fist fight broke out after councillor Darlington Musonza, an alleged Sikhala ally, slapped two women in the face over an unknown matter.

Musonza’s vehicle was later stoned by the angry mob dressed in blue, ostensibly Nelson Chamisa loyalists, forcing him to seek refuge in his car, pepper-sprayed the mob, before driving off towards the cemetery exit. The angry crowd started shouting obscenities.

The ‘Blue Movement’ mob also accused Musonza of womanising and being a land baron.

In a statement in the aftermath of the chaotic scenes that characterised the funeral, family spokesperson Washington Ali said the violence was distressing and unbefitting of the send-off they had planned for the late Moreblessing.

“We, the members of the Ali family, express our profound disapproval of the violent incidents that unfolded during the burial of our dear family member, Moreblessing Ali, on March 2, 2024.

“Our original intent was to bid farewell to our relative with the utmost dignity and without the distressing scenes we unfortunately witnessed,” he said.

The family reiterated the high regard it has for Sikhala, who was to be later arrested and jailed for nearly two years for lobbying authorities to account for Moreblessing.

“Our family firmly maintained the position that Moreblessing Ali’s interment would not proceed until our family lawyer, Honorable Job Sikhala, was released from prison.

“We had engaged Hon. Sikhala to represent us when we were in the dark about Moreblessing Ali’s whereabouts following her disappearance in May 2022. His legal expertise guided us through the intricate legal landscape, enabling us to seek answers about our relative’s fate. We patiently awaited Hon. Sikhala’s release, recognising the sacrifices he made on behalf of our family.

“As a united family, we convened multiple meetings to ensure that the unfortunate events of June 14, 2022, would not recur.

“Our collective decision was clear: Moreblessing Ali’s burial would adhere strictly to the family’s wishes and desires. Politics, party affiliations, slogans, and any interference with the family’s intentions were categorically prohibited. The funeral programme would unfold according to our internal arrangements.

“Regrettably, certain individuals disrupted the solemnity of the occasion by injecting politics and slogans into the proceedings. Their actions led to violence and insults, which we find utterly unacceptable.Furthermore, some even took it upon themselves to dictate the funeral programme, disregarding the family’s expressed wishes.”

Police have since been roped in to have unruly elements arrested over the skirmishes that characterised the highly-politicised funeral.

“As a family, we have taken the necessary steps to involve law enforcement in addressing the disruptive behaviour during our loved one’s funeral. It is crucial that we curb this behaviour promptly to foster a culture of respect for funerals and memorial services. The inhumane, insensitive, and reprehensible actions witnessed have deeply affected our family.”

Moreblessing was murdered by one Pius Jamba on May 24, 2022 and her dismembered remains were found dumped in a disused well belonging to the assailant’s mother two weeks later.

Jamba has since been convicted of the gruesome murder and sentenced to 30 years in prison by High Court Judge Esteher Muremba.

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