A 24-year-old Zaka man allegedly strangled his son at the height of an argument over paternity with the mother, police said yesterday.
Edison Jere of Machele Village under Chief Nhema took advantage of his wife, Ms Martha Mudombi (24)’s absence and allegedly throttled one-year-old Anesu Mudombi.
Masvingo police spokesperson, Chief Inspector Charity Mazula, said the incident occurred on Thursday last week at around 11 AM.
“I can confirm that we have received a report of murder involving a one-year-old boy. The boy was allegedly strangled by his father,” said Chief Insp Mazula.
She said the suspect disappeared soon after committing the offence and was on the run.
Chief Insp Mazula said Ms Mudombi left Anesu in the custody of her husband while she went to fetch water from a nearby borehole.
She said upon her return, Ms Mudombi found Jere wiping blood from Anesu’s mouth and nose.
“The suspect allegedly claimed that their son had an epileptic attack.
“The mother touched Anesu to check if he was still breathing and discovered that he was unconscious,” said the police spokesperson.
She said the couple waited until 10PM before taking the unconscious boy to his aunt, Ms Shamiso Mudindo of Chenhenga Village in the same area who once lived with the toddler.
Chief Insp Mazula said Jere sneaked from their relative’s homestead at around 1AM on Friday and fled.
She said the matter was reported later that day at around 10AM to Zaka police who attended the scene.
The body was then taken to Musiso Mission Hospital mortuary for postmortem.
Postmortem results revealed that the boy died as a result of strangulation.
Sources close to the couple said the two had previously had a misunderstanding over the boy’s paternity.