Man hangs self after an argument with father over neighbour’s cattle


A 20-year-old man from Siabuwa in Binga allegedly committed suicide by hanging after an argument with his father over a neighbour’s cattle that strayed into their maize field.

Philani Mumpande was found hanging from a tree by his cousin Mr Confidence Tshuma on Saturday morning after he disappeared from home on Thursday following a misunderstanding with his father Mr Elias Mumpande (53).

He allegedly used a wire to hang himself. Chief Siabuwa confirmed the incident which occurred in Zeula village in his area.

“He had a fight with his father although I haven’t been given full details about the cause of the misunderstanding,” he said.

There are unconfirmed reports that Mumpande and his father had a longstanding dispute over a woman he had married against his parents’ wishes which sources said could, together with the issue of the neighbour’s cattle, have triggered him to take his own life.

Matabeleland North police spokesperson Chief Inspector Siphiwe Makonese could not be reached for comment as her mobile number rang unanswered.

The Chronicle was told that Mumpande and his father had a misunderstanding on Thursday at around 11AM over how to deal with a neighbour whose cattle had strayed into their maize field.

Mumpande then left home without telling anyone where he was going and did not return home.

On Saturday at about 8AM, his body was found hanging from a tree by Mr Tshuma also aged 20 who alerted the family. Police attended the scene and retrieved the body.

The matter was treated as sudden death by hanging as no foul play was suspected.

Binga magistrate Mrs Portia Mhlanga-Moyo waived postmortem. Meanwhile, Chief Siabuwa urged people to seek professional advice or consult elderly community members when faced with disputes.

“These people needed counseling. Our people should learn to seek help than to kill each other or commit suicide as that doesn’t solve anything but bring more problems.

Some people would think that society has neglected them and decide to take their own lives but it’s our duty as citizens and community leaders to help each other seek professional advice than to kill ourselves,” he said.

— Chronicle

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