By Shingirai Vambe
Harare- Convicted in 2014 for an effective 40 years imprisonment on five counts of rape and illegal possession of pornographic material, RGM Independent End Time Message Church founder Robert Martin Gumbura has died.
Gumbura passed on at Chikurubi Maximum Prison in Harare due to Covid-19 related complications, he was 65.
Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service (ZPCS) spokesperson, Superintendent Meya Khanyezi confirmed the death of Gumbura and said his next of kin had been advised.
Speaking to Post On Sunday, former Chikurubi Maximum Prison inmate, Last Maengahama said, “Gumbura died a painful death and a bitter man due to his incarceration on rape charges and for allegedly masterminding a jailbreak in 2015.”
Maengahama who was in prison for close to a decade on false murder charges, once shared a cell with the late cleric and politician Gumbura.
“Gumbura always emotionally spoke about his being ill-treated in prison and that he was a victim of Zanu PF factionalism. Before his conviction, Gumbura was once an aspiring candidate for Mabvuku against fellow ZANU PF member Goodwills Masimirembwa and was labelled a member of the late Solomon Mujuru faction,” Maengahama, explained.
The former cleric strongly believed his ‘rape charges’ were pushed by an opposing faction in the ruling ZANU PF party.’
“The man (Gumbura) was so generous and helped a lot of inmates with food and money to pay for bail, regardless of their political affiliation.
The system didn’t like him, that’s why they falsely accused him of attempting a jailbreak. It is true that he died a very bitter man because of treatment he got in prison cells for the past seven years,” added Maengahama.
Other sources which spoke on condition of anonymity told this publication that, Gumbura was, “emotionally and mentally tortured”, to the extent that the effects could easily be noticed as he (Gumbura) constantly had migraine headaches and possibly serious mental health illness.
Zengeza West legislator, Job Sikhala told Post On Sunday that, “An investigation should be carried out as they are claims that the latter hadn’t been eating for some time. As I have alluded before, there is no cooking oil, sugar or basic nutritious meals at Chikurubi.”
“Chikurubi Maximum Prison is a concentration camp that should not be existing in this modern world. It is not worthy for human habitation, even animals won’t survive in such condition. If possible, Chikurubi should be shut down,” Sikhala added.
Gumbura the; man, pastor, convicted rapist and alleged jailbreak mastermind, died married to 22 wives and very bitter.