Man ‘kills’ uncle in fight over matches
A MAN from Inyathi allegedly fatally stabbed his uncle following a dispute over a box of matches and a 10 cents bond coin.
Ambition Calm Sibanda (24) of Lukona Village yesterday appeared before Bulawayo High Court judge, Justice Francis Bere, on circuit in Hwange facing a murder charge in connection with the death of Ino Mpofu who was aged 38.
Sibanda, who was initially jointly charged with Everson Mpofu (23), allegedly stabbed his uncle below the left ear using an Okapi knife and he died on the spot.
However, Everson’s charges were withdrawn before plea due to lack of evidence linking him to the alleged offence.
Prosecuting, Ms Namatirai Ngwasha said on January 1 this year shortly after 5AM, Mpofu was drinking beer with his wife, Ms Sibonile Nyathi, at a local village tuck-shop.
The couple was part of a group of patrons who were drinking and celebrating New Year’s Day.
Ms Ngwasha said the deceased, who was drunk, pulled Sibanda out of the tuck-shop and tripped him. He then allegedly knelt on top of his nephew and held him with both hands following a misunderstanding which emanated from a box of matches and a 10 cent bond coin.
“During the scuffle, Everson emerged and handed over the Okapi knife to Sibanda who then stabbed Mpofu on the left ear and he died on the spot,” said Ms Ngwasha.
A report was made to the police leading to Sibanda’s arrest.
Sibanda, through his lawyer, Mr Vuyisile Mpofu of VJ Mpofu and Associates, said he acted in self-defence after the deceased provoked him.
“We were drinking beer with my uncle when he searched me and took my box of matches and $3. He started attacking me saying I was disrespectful resulting in a fight,” said Sibanda.
He said he accidentally stabbed his uncle while trying to escape from the attack.
“I stabbed the deceased as he was advancing towards me. In fact, I didn’t realise I would injure him because I actually turned around and swung my arm backwards and in the process I accidentally stabbed him,” said Sibanda.
Mr Proud Sikhosana, a neighbour, said he tried to restrain the two from fighting.
“I found the deceased on top of the accused person and he held him by his throat. I tried to restrain them and that is when the accused person pulled out a knife from his pair of trousers and stabbed his uncle once on the left ear and he died on the spot,” said Mr Sikhosana.
Justice Bere is expected to deliver judgment today. — @mashnets
A cyclist along Bulawayo-Nyamandlovu Road turns around as a veld fire rages in this file photo