A NYANGA man last week contravened the Burials and Cremation Act by burying his brother without registering the death and acquiring a burial order.
Hamufari Nyamutowa (44) of Bumhira Village — brother to the late Chengetai Nyamutowa (33) — appeared at the Nyanga Magistrates’ Court last week on Friday. He was convicted of contravening Section 321 of the Burials and Cremation Act of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 503.
Nyanga magistrate, Ms Constance Marudya presided over the matter, while Mr Tafara Chawatama prosecuted.
Ms Marudya cautioned Nyamutowa against breaking the law and then ordered his release.
Chengetai died on January 25 after being involved in a motorcycle accident in Mozambique. Two other people were seriously injured in the accident.
Unidentified Mozambican nationals reportedly communicated with Nyamutowa and brought his brother’s body to an illegal crossing point near Nyakomba Business Centre.
The body was then smuggled across a flooded Gairezi River using a makeshift canoe before being buried on the same day.
“The death was not registered in the country, no death record was acquired, thereby prompting the police to conduct investigations.
Nyamutowa was subsequently arrested. Mr Chawatama said a video of the Nyamutowa family crossing the flooded Gairezi River to repatriate Chengetai’s body from Mozambique went viral on social media.
In mitigation, Nyamutowa begged the court for leniency.
He said when he received his brother’s body, it was already in an advanced state of decomposition as he had died five days earlier and this pushed him to conduct burial without the requisite death record.
Nyamutowa said he had intended to process the death record after Chengetai’s burial, adding that he had informed the local traditional leadership of the death.