A TSIKAMUTANDA allegedly tempered with eight graves and stole the coffins for resale.
Nolen Noah Makaza, 33, would resell the coffins after his exhumations. His tale included being part of mourners at funerals of rich people —some of whom he did not even know. Makaza said he would actively participate at the funerals so as to see how the coffin was placed in the grave for an easy exhumation.
"I underwent rituals that left me with these scars on my body and these scars gave me powers to heal and see things in the spiritual realm.
"1 still had my walking stick with me which I used and it is connected with the scars on my body. My colleague gave me spiritual powers to become his assistant before I became my own man — Tsikamutanda," narrated Makaza.
He said he would sell the coffins and other accessories to a white man in Karoi. "Our buyer (name supplied) would pay us $2000 for bringing best coffins he wanted and pay at least $400 for expensive screws and other items he wanted from the coffins.
"Most of our targets were places where rich people are buried like graves in various farms and at one time we opened a grave at Unit L Cemetery in Chitungwiza," Makaza said.
Makaza, who used to operate in Karoi and its environs, is now serving 16 years at Harare Central Prison after he was convicted of tempering with eight graves and stealing coffins for resale. He still has his walking stick in jail. "Ndakasungwa ndine zvinhu zvangu zvekutsikisa mutanda asi hazvishande muno muhusungwa.
"I had a dream a day before my arrest but I delayed conducting rituals and I want to believe it was high time that God wanted to show me that crime does not pay.
"I regret engaging in such activities considering the years I am going to spend here in prison. "I want to advise my relatives and friends that a living dog is better than a dead lion; crime does not pay," he said. He said his charms never worked for him when he was arrested.
"I have learnt that crime does not pay even if you have money or charms," said Makaza. "I was arrested together with my colleague who once worked for a renowned local funeral parlour for opening graves and stealing coffins for resale."
Makaza and his colleague's luck ran out after he had a misunderstanding with his wife and forced her packing only to return home and found one of the coffins in the bedroom. "My wife is the one who sold me out after we had a misunderstanding," said Makaza.
"She was not aware that I was earning money through opening graves to get coffins for sale aingoziva kuti ndinotsvaga mari zvekuti yauyasei izvo akanga asingazvitsvage. "She returned home without notice after I had chased her away and discovered the coffin and reported me to the village head leading to my arrest," said Makaza.