By Nkosizile Ndlovu
Five artisanal miners assaulted and tortured two brothers with an electric shocker resulting in the death of one of the siblings before the gang handed themselves to the police along with the dead body.
The second sibling sustained serious body injuries and is admitted to the United Bulawayo Hospitals.
The incident happened on Thursday last week at Cement Siding in Bulawayo.
After noticing that one of the torture victims had died, the accused persons handed themselves over to the police by taking the lifeless body of the now deceased Kelvin Sibanda (27) to Queenspark Police Station base at Cement Siding, leading to their arrest.
The accused persons, Phathisani Sibanda (30), Joachim Mangena (24), Shelton Ndlovu (25) Lizwe Ndlovu (31) and a juvenile who cannot be named for legal reasons were yesterday not asked to plead when they appeared before the Bulawayo magistrate Mr Sheperd Munjanja charged with murder and attempted murder.
The magistrate advised them through their lawyer Sifelani Mguni of R Ndlovu & Company legal practitioners to apply for bail at the High Court as they have committed a serious crime that led to the loss of a life.
The accused persons are all employed by Big Four Mine Syndicate as artisanal miners at Cement Siding.
They were remanded in custody to October 29 for both crimes.
Prosecuting, Mr Terrence Chakabuda told the court that the accused persons proceeded to Kandale Farm/Homestead in Cement Siding where they met the now deceased Kelvin who was in the company of his elder brother Clifford Sibanda (32) who is a complainant in the attempted murder crime.
“The accused persons met the two brothers at Kandale Farm/Homestead and they inquired why they had assaulted their brother of which the siblings professed ignorance and denied the accusations. The accused persons became violent and started assaulting the now deceased and his brother using wooden logs and torturing them using an electric shocker all over their bodies while threatening to kill them with a knife,” said Mr Chakabuda.
The court was told that while they were assaulting the siblings, one of the accused persons drew a knife and used it to cut the dreadlocks of the deceased who was wailing in agony.
“The assault and torture continued for quite some time leading to one of the siblings who had his dreadlocks cut using a knife succumbing to injuries inflicted on him and Clifford sustained internal back and head injuries as well as a swollen face,” Mr Chakabuda said.
Clifford was ferried to the United Bulawayo Hospitals for medical attention where he is still admitted.
The electric shocker and a knife used to cut the now deceased’s dreadlocks were recovered. The Chronicle.