HomeLocal NewsSecond fire attack at headman home

Second fire attack at headman home


BIKITA — Arsonists returned on Saturday night and torched centenarian headman Zimunya Muonde’s other hut, three days after burning down three other thatched houses at his homestead.

Last Wednesday, the arsonists, suspected to be Zanu PF activists, torched Muonde’s gazebo and two huts belonging to his son, Vikirai. In one of the huts slept Vikirai’s wife and her two sons, one aged eight and another one who is 18 months old.

The perpetrators, who had served the family with a warning letter, accusing other villagers on the hit list of accepting maize seed donated by the MDC-T, then proceeded to burn down the 100-year-old’s hut which housed his farming equipment.

Jane Muonde, the village head’s daughter, said their hut, which they were using as a kitchen, was also torched late Saturday night.

“We thought the storm was over, but it is far from over, as revealed by this second attack. Now we do not know what to do because the arsonists may strike again until someone dies, as was written in the warning letter,” she said.

Before the arson attacks, the family had received an anonymous letter, purportedly from a “Good Samaritan”, warning them of the planned attacks.

Jane said they did not take the warning lightly as the threats were now being implemented.

“They are really fulfilling what they wrote in the letter and we fear for our lives. We reported the matter again at Ngorima police base and we plead with the police to investigate so that there will be no fatalities,” she said.

Masvingo provincial police spokesperson, Inspector Tinaye Matake, said he had not yet received the report.

“I have not yet received the report, but we will have to make a follow-up and get the details,” said Inspector Matake.

Zanu PF provincial chairman, Lovemore Matuke, could not be reached for comment yesterday as he was not reachable on his mobile number.

MDC-T Masvingo provincial spokesperson, Harrison Mudzuri, said the violence showed that the country was not yet ready for elections.

“I got the report. It is very saddening. How can people continue to attack an aged and defenceless traditional leader? We condemn the behaviour by Zanu PF and we urge Jomic to look into the case,” he said.

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