By Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu
A Gwanda-based gold panner is on the run after he allegedly fatally struck his workmate with an axe over an undisclosed issue.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Nyathi confirmed the incident which occurred at Bhuqwini Panning Site in West Nicholson on Sunday at around 11AM.
He said the suspect was still at large.
Asst Comm Nyathi appealed to members of the public with information on his whereabouts to contact the police.
“I can confirm that we are investigating the murder of a 29-year-old man which occurred at a panning site in West Nicholson in Gwanda on 1 December. We are looking for the suspect, Thulani Ndlovu, from Hlatshwayo Village in Filabusi as he is currently on the run and we appeal to anyone with information that could lead to his arrest to contact the police,” he said.
“Police are investigating the matter in order to establish the circumstances that led to the murder and the cause of the misunderstanding. We also want to establish whether there were any other people that were involved. As police we continue to urge members of the public to desist from engaging in violence.”
A source close to the investigations who preferred anonymity said Ndlovu, whose age is not known, struck his victim from Dambudza Village in Mberengwa with an axe after he found him sleeping underneath a tree following a misunderstanding they had three days before. He said the two men, who were both working at Bhuqwini Panning Site, had a misunderstanding over an unknown issue and their peers managed to calm them down.
On Sunday at around 11AM, Ndlovu found the workmate, who was drunk, sleeping underneath a tree and struck him with an axe and he died on the spot. After committing the offence, Ndlovu alerted nearby villagers about what he had done and then fled from the scene. Villagers tried to track him down but they couldn’t locate him, said the source. The Chronicle