MDC –T councillor for Ward 29 in Bulawayo, Monica Lubimbi (60), allegedly connived with a resident who was involved in a house wrangle for the past seven years to murder her rival and give the councillor his brains, tongue, lips, nose and fingers, a Bulawayo magistrate heard on Friday.
The allegations came to light on Friday when Lubimbi and seven others, Pisi Nxumalo (56), Nkosinathi Khumalo (27), Ntando Moyo (21), Opah Moyo (59), Busani Sibanda(30), Xolani Ncube (30) and Hlonipani Mugayo (29) — appeared before Bulawayo provincial magistrate Abednico Ndebele facing charges of murder.
They were not asked to plead and were remanded in custody to Tuesday for confirmation of their warned-and-cautioned statements and for Lubimbi, who is being represented by Nosimilo Chanayiwa of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, to apply for bail to the High Court.
All the suspects advised the court that they were assaulted by the police and Ndebele ordered the prosecutor, Malvern Nzombe, to investigate the allegations and bring the outcome to court on September 2.
He also ordered that they be examined by a government doctor and receive treatment before Tuesday.
Charges against them are that Khumalo and the now deceased, Mgoli Majola, had a long-standing wrangle over a house in Emakhandeni suburb in the city.
The row allegedly started in 2004 and had been dragging at the High Court without a solution in sight.
Khumalo allegedly sought the assistance of Lubimbi, Nxumalo and Sibanda and a Zibusiso Mnkandla, but they failed to resolve the issue.
Nxumalo, Khumalo and Mugayo allegedly planned to repossess the house by eliminating Majola and they allegedly communicated their plan to Lubimbi.
She allegedly supported the idea and asked to be given Majola’s tongue, brain , lips and fingers if the plan succeeded.
After agreeing, they allegedly hired Moyo, Sibanda, Ncube and Mugayo to kill him.
The quartet, with the help of Moyo, who is in the police constabulary in Nkayi, allegedly kidnapped Majola on July 27 after she posed as a police officer.
Moyo, who was in police uniform, went to Majola’s house with her alleged accomplices and advised him that he was under arrest for impregnating his maid.
The five allegedly claimed that they were taking him to Entumbane Police Station and allegedly took him to a bushy area in Richmond suburb.
On arrival, they allegedly struck him with a machete on the head after Moyo had allegedly handcuffed him on to a tree trunk. After allegedly killing him, they fled from the scene in a vehicle which was being driven by Ncube.
The following day, Khumalo and Mugayo allegedly returned to the scene and removed Majola’s tongue, brains, fingers, lips and nose and wrapped them in a plastic bag before they allegedly gave them to Lubimbi at her house in Magwegwe North.
Majola’s body was later discovered by women who were fetching firewood, who alerted the police.
Investigations led to the eight’s arrest.