A DECOMPOSING body of a 35-year-old man from Bulawayo’s Mpopoma suburb was discovered at his home yesterday with relatives suspecting he could have been killed as there were scratch marks on the body.
Surprisingly, the body of Dennis Frank Sibanda was discovered by his uncle Mr Fraser Sibanda who was staying with him.
Bulawayo police spokesperson Inspector Precious Simango said investigations were still underway.
“We are investigating a case of a suspected murder and investigations are still underway and further details cannot be revealed to avoid jeopardising investigations,” she said.
However, other relatives are now questioning how Mr Sibanda only discovered the body when it had decomposed, pointing to the fact that Dennis could have died days earlier.
When Sunday News visited the Mpopoma home yesterday, relatives and neighbours were in shock over the issue.
According to the deceased’s wife, Mrs Memory Sibanda, she last saw her husband on Wednesday.
“I last saw him on Wednesday when we parted ways as I was going to Cowdray Park. We had been looking for new lodgings as there were some squabbles at the family house. In fact, I had moved out to stay with my brother as there was a lot of tension. So I had found a place to stay and I told him to tell ubaba that we were now leaving the family home which is what he wanted,” she said.
Ms Sibanda added: “We decided to move out to avoid those problems. Sometimes Dennis would sleep outside as ubaba would lock him out telling him to move out of the house as he wanted to pave way for his other child who is based in South Africa. So when I left him on Wednesday I did not hear from him again.”
“Before I even went to church today (Saturday) his friend Jethro came to my brother’s place and alerted me that ubaba (Mr Sibanda) wanted to see me urgently so I should come to Mpopoma. I then said I will follow after church but Jethro said it was urgent. He did not explain why but I was suspicious and then went to Mpopoma. It shocked me when I arrived and saw people gathered and that is when I was told my husband had died. There was a foul smell, surely if he died today how could his body have deteriorated so fast.”
Neighbours said they suspected foul play as well.
“When his uncle told people that Dennis was not responding we came to see him and already there was a foul smell, he had maggots and there was blood coming out of his nose and mouth meaning he did not die today. The uncle should know better since he is the one who came to inform us and they lived together,” said a neighbour who declined to be named.
The deceased’s cousin, Mr Lovemore Sibanda said he last saw Dennis on Thursday saying he wanted to go and collect a cellphone.
“There was an issue about a cellphone. The man who stays in the back room said on Thursday he heard some noise as they were fighting (Frank and Dennis) but did not go and intervene as he was scared to be also beaten. On Friday he said there was no activity and assumed all was well,” he said.
Mr Sibanda said when they got to the house, they noticed that Dennis’ body had visible marks, an indication that he was attacked.
“As we lifted him we realised his body was swollen to show he had not died the previous day, he had marks on his back consistent with being beaten with an object, on his chest he had a big black spot covering most of his chest and there was blood coming from his mouth and maggots in his nose,” he said.
The uncle, Mr Fraser Sibanda who lived with Dennis said he was not in a position to talk.
“It happened, so we are waiting for the post-mortem results to determine the cause of death. I cannot tell you much,” he said.
The deceased’s brother Mr Ishmael Sibanda also said they had no information on what happened exactly.
“We have no information as yet; we are yet to get details of what transpired. I just came to identify the body, I will also wait for the post-mortem and hear what caused the death, the post-mortem is the answer,” he said.