A MAN who killed his wife for allegedly talking on the phone with another man was beginning an 18-year jail stretch yesterday.
Thembinkosi Gumbi, of Mbizo suburb in Kwekwe, repeatedly struck his wife on the head with a car shock absorber on December 29, 2013, after accusing her of infidelity. She died days later in hospital.
Justice Lawrence Kamocha of the Bulawayo High Court, sitting on circuit in Gweru, told Gumbi that “homes shouldn’t be turned into war zones” as he sent him away for 18 years.
Before passing the sentence, Justice Kamocha castigated Gumbi’s in-laws for demanding 20 head of cattle before they could bury their daughter, Nyarai Moyo, 28.
The judge said the in-laws’ demands were criminal and ordered that they be investigated for extortion.
Gumbi’s uncle, Abednigo Munago, in mitigation, had told the court that after Moyo’s death, her family demanded 20 beasts before they could bury her. They had managed to pay eight head of cattle to Moyo’s family, he added.
Justice Kamocha, who appeared shocked by the revelations said: “That was extortion they committed and extortion is a crime. They should be charged with extortion.
“Extortion, no matter the circumstances, can’t be allowed to go on. I urge you to go and report them to the police.”
He said extortion was prevalent especially in rural areas adding that it was time it was brought to an end.
“The police need to investigate this,” said the judge.
Justice Kamocha, in passing sentence, said he had taken into consideration that Gumbi had already stayed in prison for a year.
He said the fact that his family had been forced to pay compensation was another factor that resulted in him passing an 18-year sentence.
“However, it must be noted that courts don’t condone violent crimes. Homes shouldn’t be turned into war zones,” he said.
Moyo suffered brain damage and a depressed skull from the vicious attack.
Gumbi had a quarrel with his wife on December 29, 2013, at around 11PM which resulted in Moyo locking herself in a car. Gumbi armed himself with a shock absorber and used it to smash the car’s windows. He grabbed Moyo and bashed her head against the roof of the car.
He pulled her out of the car and struck her several times on the head with the shock absorber. Moyo attempted to run away but he got hold of her, threw her to the ground and continued with the assault.
Neighbours called the police and Moyo was rushed to Kwekwe District Hospital for treatment. She was subsequently referred to Parirenyatwa Hospital where she died on January 5 last year.
Rossa Takuva prosecuted.