A MAKONDE man, Tangai Gambiza, and a self-styled prophet, Chamunorwa Ndofura, were last week spared from the hangman’s noose, but were slapped with life imprisonment each after being convicted of killing the former’s brother, Talent, and burning his corpse.
BY CHARLES LAITON
Tangai hired Ndofura to help him kill his 22-year-old brother, whom he alleged had been pestering him to share the $40 monthly rentals he had been collecting from their late parent’s house in Budiriro 5, Harare.
Last week, Tangai and Ndofura appeared before High Court judge, Justice Amie Tsanga and were both convicted of killing Talent with actual intent before being sentenced to life imprisonment.
According to the evidence presented in court, the cold-blooded murder occurred on December 10, 2015 in Makonde district in Mashonaland West province.
The court heard sometime in December 2015, Talent, who was staying at Village 31 Kanyati B, consulted Ndofura at his homestead seeking spiritual healing and was taken to a shrine where he was given a poisoned concoction.
Unbeknown to Talent, his brother, Tangai, had earlier arranged with Ndofura to lace his drink with poison, in the name of spiritual healing, upon being consulted.
After taking the concoction, Talent started vomiting and he went to a nearby clinic, but was joined by Ndofura, who persuaded him to report that he had taken mangoes laced with a tobacco pesticide without washing his hands.
While at Makonde Health Centre, Talent was attended to by Ephraim Nyoni and he narrated to him the pesticide story, as Ndofura was present.
After Ndofura had left, Talent spilled the beans and reported that Ndofura had given him a concoction. When Ndofura visited him the next day to check on his condition, he discovered he had recovered.
Ndofura then proceeded to call Tangai, who came and sought his brother’s discharge. While on their way home, the court heard, the trio took a footpath through the bush, where Tangai picked up a log and hit his brother several times knocking him unconscious.
Realising Talent had died, the two left the body and proceeded home for the night.
The following day, the two men returned to the corpse carrying petrol, torched the body and took the remains to the top of a nearby mountain where they threw them into a cave.
After the incident, the two went to Makonde Police Station, where they filed a missing persons report, claiming the now-deceased had fled to an unknown destination.
The missing person report spread throughout the community and Zanu PF youth district chairperson, Itai Chikazamba then approached Tangai with the intention of mobilising party youth to search the mountains, but during the interview, Tangai disclosed he had killed his brother with Ndofura’s help.
Chikazamba then reported the matter to the police, leading to the duo’s arrest.
Prosecutor Henry Muringani appeared for the State.