A birthday party in Gweru turned from merrymaking into tragedy when four gatecrashers fatally assaulted the happy birthday man, traumatising his widow into failing to breastfeed her newborn who then died five days later.
Mrs Sophia Musekiwa of Gweru’s Mkoba 13 just wanted a good celebration for husband Charles on his 43rd birthday on August 16, so she organised a small party.
“We had a gathering at home to celebrate my husband’s birthday. Four men showed up at our house uninvited. I am not sure if they were acquainted to my husband, but he allowed them to stay on anyhow,” she said, clearly struggling to hold back tears.
But when it was time to eat “my husband politely told the men that there wasn’t enough to eat as we had not planned for their presence,” she said before breaking down.
The four left, but soon came back armed with stones and iron bars and still got no food. They flew into a rage and began attacking everyone indiscriminately, including her husband.
Mr Musekiwa was struck with a stone on the upper abdomen and sustained internal injuries after which he and other injured guests were rushed to hospital.
His 19-year-old son, Tinotenda, sustained a broken leg in the savage attack.
Mr Musekiwa succumbed to his injuries at Gweru Provincial Hospital.
Mrs Musekiwa went into deep depression and was unable to breastfeed her newly-born baby for five days, resulting in his death.
Brother to the deceased, Mr Edward Musekiwa said: “We were in a celebratory mood that is why we allowed the men to stay on. They demanded food but we told them we had not made provision for extra food. They also demanded beer but we told them we did not have any because of our Christian beliefs.
“I am now the father figure but I can’t fend for the family because I am unemployed. My brother who was a builder, was the one looking after me. It’s a desperate situation,” he said.
Mr Charles Musekiwa and the baby were buried side by side in Zhombe.
Midlands Provincial police spokesperson, Inspector Joel Goko said one suspect had been arrested while his three accomplices were still at large.
“One suspect, Brightworth Kaputo (28) is now in police custody facing a murder charge. Police are now hunting for his three accomplices, Brighton Mlauzi (20), Marshal Muza (19) and Joseph Zulu (28).”
Insp Goko appealed for information leading to the arrest of the other suspects.