Murder suspect freed

BULAWAYO - A 29-year-old Mbembesi murder suspect regained his freedom yesterday when Magistrate Abednigo Ndebele accepted application for his case to be withdrawn.

Ncedanani Dhlamini, a neighbourhood watch member who had served 11 months in Khami Maximum Prison was last year arrested for allegedly killing 30-year-old Onia Gumbo, a suspected cattle rustler in Battlefield village.

Dhlamini’s colleagues, Vote Ntakana, 23, Headman Ndondo, 29, Adam Mayaphi, 34, Alven Mpengesi, 28, Oster Mabutho Ginya (age not given), MCloved Ndondo, 34, and David Ngwenya, 28, are still on the run and are believed to have skipped the country to South Africa.

It is the State’s case that sometime in March 2013, the suspects stormed the deceased’s lodgings at John Sibanda’s homestead where he was employed as a domestic worker.

Chief Ndondo had sent the accused persons to arrest Gumbo for allegedly stealing Mabutho’s cattle.

The group allegedly assaulted the late Gumbo with knobkerries all over the body, handcuffed and frogmarched him while taking turns to assault him to the village they suspected he sold the stolen beasts.

When they arrived back at Gumbo’s place, his sister gave him food and tablets as he was complaining that he was feeling dizzy and has a headache.

After the meal and medication, the accused persons again force marched Gumbo from his place to Mbembesi Police Station.

It is stated that after they had walked about one kilometre Gumbo sat down under the shade as he could no longer walk. A few minutes later he died on the spot.

The group realised what they had done and they covered the dead body with tree branches before proceeding to the police station where they made a false report of sudden death claiming they suspected he had been poisoned.

Police attended the scene and carried out investigations leading to Dhlamini’s arrest while the rest fled. A postmortem carried out indicated that Gumbo had died of head injuries and brain haemorrhage.

Dhlamini in a statement said he was not part of the gang but only arrived at the scene to find his colleagues saying they are going to make a report of sudden death to the police.

He said he only accompanied his colleagues to the police station and he was not aware of what they had done.

The accused’s lawyer Jabulani Mhlanga, who applied for withdrawal of the case and release of his client, stated that none of the witnesses mentioned that Dhlamini took part in assaulting the now deceased.

Comments (1)

Whoever introduced these police constabularies born of a party is the one responsible for these murders. They are found in every part of the country and are notorious untrained party thugs who operate by their master's instructions. Nyaya yekuda kutonga kusvika madhongi amera nyanga iyi! We wish we knew it before, we couldn't have supported these murderers and damn thieves.

Nyashanu - 14 February 2014

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