Abel Zhakata Senior Reporter
A WELL-KNOWN Mutare illegal foreign currency dealer was forced to flee from his house in Hospital Hill last week on Saturday when angry mourners who had just buried their relative besieged it, accusing him of having a hand in the death of their loved one.
Darlington Chitsa, who is married, was also accused of bedding the deceased Spencer Mushonga’s wife, Vimbiso Mukundwi.
Last week on Thursday, a bruised Mushonga was found in a river near Zimunya Township just outside Mutare. He was rushed to Victoria Chitepo (Mutare) Provincial Hospital, but died before admission.
The police are suspecting foul play on Mushonga’s death and two post mortems have been done to ascertain the cause of his death. Investigations are still in progress.
But Mushonga’s relatives are convinced that the two alleged lovebirds – Chitsa and Mukundwi – orchestrated his death by forcing him to drink poison and faking a suicide.
A desperate Chitsa scaled the fence and took to his heels after about 20 vehicles ferrying irate mourners stormed his residence.
On their way from Dangamvura Cemetery, Mushonga’s relatives drove to Chitsa’s place of residence. It is said the mourners wanted to mete instant justice on the forex dealer who plies his trade in Mutare’s downtown area.
Armed with an assortment of weapons, the mob allegedly broke into his yard and broke all windowpanes, before unleashing an orgy of violence that shook the neighbourhood. Those who witnessed the drama said the mourners were baying for Chitsa’s blood.
“I was outside when the convoy arrived and I had to lock myself up in the house fearing for my life,” said a neighbour who requested anonymity.
A black Toyota Harrier sport utility vehicle that was parked in the yard was extensively damaged after the mourners uprooted some iron poles and used them to destroy it.
When they tried to burn the vehicle, the fire was put out after it had only burnt some seat belts.
Mukundwi, who together with her relatives was barred from attending the funeral, refused to comment.
“I can’t talk to you right now. I have no comment,” she said.
When contacted for comment, Chitsa denied ever having an affair with Mukundwi.
“I don’t know the woman you are talking about. It is all news to me,” he said.
“These people destroyed my property for no reason because I was not in love with the deceased’s wife and did not play any part in his death. I have since made a police report over that issue.”
Manicaland provincial police spokesperson Inspector Tavhiringwa Kakohwa confirmed that a malicious damage to property report was made at Mutare Central Police Station, under CR number 845/20.
“We are now looking for Archiford Mushonga and several other suspects who took part in committing the crime,” he said.
“It is alleged that on May 16, the complainant received a phone call from a friend who told him that the mourners were coming to his house to beat him up. When he was about to flee, he saw about 20 cars approaching his house. The mourners were shouting that they wanted to beat the complainant for having a love affair with the deceased’s wife. The complainant managed to escape and fled from the house.
“He left a Toyota Harrier which was extensively damaged. The suspects tried to burn it, but only a seat belt got burnt. They disappeared after committing the crime.”
Insp Kakohwa said anyone with information leading to the arrest of the suspects should alert the nearest police station.