by STEPHEN CHADENGA
A 68-YEAR-OLD mentally unstable Zvishavane man, who killed his wife in November 2016 and burnt her body on “a sacrificial altar” built on a hilltop, has been acquitted of murder after the High Court considered his condition.
High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese last week referred Kenneth Masuku of Mabele village, Chief Wedza in Zvishavane back to Mlondolozi Mental Prison for further treatment.
The judge ruled Masuku could not be held legally responsible for his actions at the time he killed his 51- year-old wife, Lucia Dziwadi.
In coming up with the judgment, Justice Makonese relied on the medical examination prepared by a psychiatrist which confirmed Masuku’s mental instability.
It was the State case that on November 22, 2016 at around 6pm, Masuku informed the deceased that he had been instructed by a prophet to fetch water from a river for the purposes of cleansing the homestead.
He requested that deceased accompany him to Ngezi River to fetch water using two five-litre plastic containers.
On their return, Masuku diverted the route and headed to Mushandungwa Hill where he picked a wooden log and struck her repeatedly until she died.
He then searched her pockets and took out her cellphone and identity card.
He prepared an altar of stones and firewood, laid her body on top and set it ablaze.
Masuku later went home where he buried deceased’s mobile phone and identity card outside his homestead.
The matter came to light on November 25, 2016, leading to the discovery of deceased’s remains at Mushandungwa Hill and Masuku’s subsequent arrest.