“It is not a dark secret. It is true that I was diagnosed with clinical depression and a panic disorder for which I am under medication. This is common in people who have gone through trauma. I went through trauma; I went through many things including that whole process of inheritance battles when my husband died,” she told the Financial Gazette this week.
Misihairabwi-Mushonga was widowed in 2009 after her husband Christopher Mushonga died of injuries sustained from a botched robbery.
She quit as the MDC secretary general after fights took their toll. MDC leader, Welshman Ncube is said to have mentioned her depression in one of the party’s meetings. He has denied it.
“If indeed he (Ncube) said it, then he must have had a reason to discuss that. It is true I have that condition, and Prof (Professor Ncube) would know because as someone I have worked very closely with and has been my adviser for over 30 years, I confided in him. But for Prof to say that at a meeting, if he did, he must have had a good reason to mention it,” Misihairabwi-Mushonga said.
Misihairabwi-Mushonga said the problem was that people did not want to discuss issues of mental health because of the stigma attached to the condition.
“We should talk about it. There are many people, including women and widows here in Zimbabwe that are similarly affected. It is nothing to hide. It is treatable. I am more worried about whether or not affected people are seeking treatment,” she said.