A MAN from Matobo District who fatally stabbed his uncle with a knife for allegedly boasting that he was having an affair with his wife has been sentenced to 25 years in jail.
Steven Tshuma (32) of Bazha village under Chief Masuku area was convicted of murder with actual intent by Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Nicholas Mathonsi in connection with the death of Pedzisai Mpofu (36).
Tshuma stabbed Mpofu once in the back and once on the neck after he accused him of cheating with his wife.
In passing sentence, Justice Mathonsi condemned violence, saying the courts have a duty to uphold the sanctity of human life through passing deterrent sentences.
“This court has to protect human life and it is required by the law to impose a sentence which underscores the sanctity of human life. We cannot allow people to move around armed with Okapi knives, which they use to take away other people’s lives on the basis of a woman,” he said.
Justice Mathonsi said Tshuma behaved like a village bully and committed the murder in a callous manner.
“There is however, no doubt that resorting to taking away the life of a person over a woman cannot be tolerated in a civilised society. What is apparent is that the accused person behaved like a village bully. He targeted his own uncle and stabbed him in broad day light, killing him instantly and walked away like someone who had just slaughtered an animal. The sentence must therefore reflect society’s revulsion of that kind of criminality and accordingly the accused is sentenced to 25 years imprisonment,” ruled the judge.
Prosecuting, Mr Trust Muduma said on December 11 last year at around 5PM, Mpofu was drinking beer at Zamangothando Bottle Store at Bazha Business Centre when Tshuma walked in.
“Mpofu greeted Tshuma who in turn confronted him and started accusing him of boasting around that he was having an affair with his wife, Sinikiwe Moyo,” said Mr Muduma.
A misunderstanding arose between the two men and Tshuma drew an Okapi knife from his trouser pocket which he used to stab Mpofu once in the back.
Mpofu ran for dear life, heading out of the bar, but Tshuma caught up with him and this time aimed for the neck.
Mpofu fell to the ground, bled profusely and died before he could be rushed to hospital.
A report was made to the police leading to Tshuma’s arrest.
According to a post mortem report, the cause of death was assault, stab wound and haemorrhage shock neck.
In his defence, Tshuma, through his lawyer Ms Thandolwethu Dube Mazibisa of Ndove and Associates Legal Practitioners, said he acted out of provocation and in self-defence.