A MAN who allegedly killed four Gokwe sisters after torching a hut they were sleeping in, said he was not aware that there were people sleeping in the hut.
Dingilizwe Dube (39) of Gayela Village under Chief Madliwa’s area in Nkayi district, told Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Nokuthula Moyo on circuit in Gweru that the torching of the hut was meant to force his father-in-law to return home from South Africa.
Dube who was based in South Africa together with his father-in-law, said the father-in-law had sent gangsters to extort money from him while demanding lobola.
He said while the father was demanding lobola, he was having problems with his wife so he wanted his father-in-law to return home and help resolve their differences.
Dube, who is facing four counts of murder, has pleaded not guilty and the trial continues today.
He said his father-in-law only identified as Mr Dlomo sent gangsters to extort money from him while demanding lobola.
“My father-in-law sent gangsters to harass me while I was in South Africa demanding lobola and I paid him R5 500. The gangsters also took my car, television set and a fridge,” he said.
Dube said what infuriated him was that after paying such an amount and losing assets, his wife Privilege Dlomo (24) ran away from home on five occasions.
He said he wanted to burn down Mr Dlomo’s homestead and kill his cattle to force him to come back home from South Africa to resolve his problems with his wife.
“I pre-planned burning my in-laws’ hut for two days. On August 17, I drank brandy to gather courage and proceeded to their homestead. I went to the cattle pen and struck cattle with a machete,” he said.
Dube said he proceeded to Mr Dlomo’s bedroom, sprinkled petrol and then torched the hut.
He said he was burnt on the hand and ran away but was not aware that his wife’s four sisters were in the hut.
“I went to Inyathi that night and was then called by my father who told me that disaster had struck the Dlomo family. It was not my intention to kill the siblings. I apologise to God and the Dlomo family for what I did,” said Dube.
It is the State case that on August 17, Dube had an altercation with his in-laws, the Dlomos of Mkuze Village under Chief Mkoka in Gokwe South.
He then allegedly hatched a plan to kill them.
Dube allegedly acquired a machete and petrol and went to his in-laws’ homestead at night.
He allegedly sprinkled petrol on the bedroom hut in which Peculiar (4), Princess (13), Preference (15) and Progress (19) were sleeping and torched the hut.
The four siblings were all burnt to death.
After committing the crime, Dube allegedly proceeded to his in-laws’ cattle pen and killed nine beasts using a machete.
He was allegedly seen earlier during the day carrying the fuel container.
Dube also dropped his hat and a miner’s torch at the scene of the crime and the two items were identified as his by some villagers.
The machete allegedly used to kill the beasts was recovered by the police at his homestead.
Mr Samuel Pedzisayi appeared for the State.