Families of 3 pupils who died after being run over by Fortuner driver demand US$24 000 and 28 cattle


Families of three Penhalonga learners who were killed in a heart-wrenching road traffic accident along Christmas-Pass-Shamu Road last week tabled hefty demands of US$24 000 and 28 head of cattle prior to the burial of the minors.

The families also demanded four goats and two cocks in line with their cultural practices.

Sylvian (13) and Strive Maponde (nine) as well as Blessing Chisare (nine) were knocked down by an alleged speeding Toyota Fortuner that was being driven by John Dumbura.

The siblings were buried at their rural home in Marange last Friday, while Chisare (nine) was interred at Tsvingwe Cemetery in Penhalonga last Saturday.

John Dumbura was still to appear in court facing culpable homicide charges at the time of going to Press.

Acting Manicaland provincial police spokesperson, Assistant Inspector Wiseman Chinyoka said the docket was still being processed, with post-mortem results already out.

Assistant Inspector Chinyoka said the matter will be taken to court once all relevant information, including the Vehicle Inspectorate Department (VID) report, were availed.

“Police are still working on the docket, and as we speak, the post-mortem results are already in, but we are still waiting for the VID report. The matter will be taken to court once all the relevant information has been processed,” he said.

The Maponde family’s demands for reparation were handed over to John’s uncle, Mr Shellington Dumbura, a copy of the agreement which is in possession of this publication.

The agreement reads: “On the death of Gift Maponde’s two children, we agreed on March 13, 2024 that: (1) for each of the deceased child, the perpetrator pays 14 cattle, and that means it should add up to 28 cattle for the two children. For each child, they also pay US$5 000: that means 28 cattle and US$10 000 as well as four goats and two cocks.”

The Chisare family also entered into a similar agreement with the Dumburas and it reads: “For Blessing’s death, we have agreed that Mr Dumbura pays US$14 000. Today, he paid US$1 000, leaving a balance of US$13 000.”

Mr Dumbura confirmed entering into an agreement with the deceased’s families when The Manica Post contacted him on Tuesday.

“I did not argue with them. We accepted what they were demanding. Every place has its traditions, so we just follow what they said,” he said.

Mr Dumbura said traditional leaders in Marange expressed concern over the Maponde family’s hefty demands.

“While we were in Bocha (Marange) where the two siblings were buried, the traditional leader actually pointed out that they (Mapondes) had charged more than what they were traditionally supposed to.

“Their culture stipulates that they should charge seven cattle per child to make them 14 for the two. The chief also wants three beasts for each child killed, making them six, and a total of 20,” said Mr Dumbura.

Chief Mutasa also waded into the matter, arguing that the demands for money and cattle was pure madness and unlawful.

“Normally, reparations are not paid before the deceased manifests in an avenging spirit, spelling out what he or she wants. What we do in our area is that when an accident happens or when one is killed in such a way, the perpetrator meets all the funeral expenses; that is the transport, food and coffins.

“We bury the deceased and then wait for the deceased’s spirit to manifest and make its demands known. You cannot say when someone has died today, you wake up the next day demanding reparation. That is madness; it is unlawful,” he said.

Government also chipped in through the Department of Civil Protection (DCP) and availed the three coffins and hearses to facilitate the burial of the three children.

The bereaved families were also supported with grain. Manica Post.

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