A 31-year-old pharmacy technician at Nkayi District Hospital in Matabeleland North province has been arrested on allegations of murdering his wife after he doused her head with methylated spirit before setting her on fire.
Vusumuzi Ncube (31) was arrested on Monday following investigations carried out by police over the death of his wife, Letwin Gotido (34) sometime in March, following a domestic dispute.
The two were staying together with their three children and a niece at Nkayi District Hospital Quarters.
He was yesterday still in police custody and assisting police with investigations.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the arrest.
“Allegations are that sometime this year, the accused (Ncube) came home around 1am while he was drunk and in the sitting room, there was his niece aged 16 and three children aged nine, eight and six who were sleeping,” he said.
“It is alleged that he woke up his niece and asked her to accompany him outside and during the process, the accused person’s wife (Gotido) woke up and followed them outside. She asked him why he had called the niece outside especially during that time of the hour.”
Asst Comm Nyathi said this did not go down well with Ncube, who then started beating up his wife until the children intervened.
He then went to sleep alone in the bedroom before Gotido followed him a few minutes later.
It is alleged that Ncube took a bottle of methylated spirit, which he poured on her face and head before setting her on fire.
The children heard some noise and when they went inside the bedroom, they found Ncube trying to cover Gotido’s face with a blanket, which also caught fire.
Water was then used to extinguish the fire before Gotido was taken to Nkayi Hospital for treatment.
As a result of the severe burns, she was transferred to Mpilo Hospital and during the process no one divulged what had happened.
She later died in March and a post-mortem was conducted which revealed that she had died due to severe burns and in unclear circumstances, prompting the officials to make a report to the police who conducted investigations leading to Ncube’s arrest.