Tragic end to Khumbula’s empire

20 Mar, 2020 - 00:03 0 Views
Tragic end to Khumbula’s empire Khumbula’s car after the accident

The ManicaPost

Abel Zhakata Senior Weekender Reporter
SIX armed robbers who on Sunday morning gunned down a well-known Mutare businessman — Shingirai Khumbula — had unsuccessfully tried to break into his Darlington residence on three different occasions, The Manica Post has established.

Khumbula was laid to rest on Tuesday at his Mwacheta rural home in Chipinge.

He was 42.

The late Khumbula was the founder and director of Evergreen Investments, with supermarkets in Dangamvura, Sakubva, Chikanga and Marange.

On the night before the tragic murder, African Apostolic Church International church members were camped at the late Khumbula’s house for an all-night prayer vigil that was meant to put a stop to the incessant robbery attempts.

Narrating his experience at the hands of the criminals, Bishop Job Mandendera said the deceased had told him of the sleepless nights he was having following the foiled attacks.

Bishop Mandendera said while on their way from a memorial service in Gombakomba, Khumbula pleaded with them to stay at his house and help him with prayers to keep the robbers at bay.

“After we finished the memorial service last Saturday afternoon, the deceased told me about the robbery attempts at his house. He pleaded for church members to spend the night at his house and intercede over the issue,” he said.

“I was supposed to travel back to Harare, but I cancelled the trip and camped at Khumbula’s house for the prayers. Little did we know that the devil had his own plans.

“On Sunday morning at around 5am during the morning prayer session, Khumbula’s maid opened the doors and the gate to do her usual chores.

“All of a sudden, we heard her screaming. She bolted into the house. Before we could understand what was happening, the robbers stormed in and one of them fired a warning shot. They ordered us to lie down on the floor and we complied,” he said.

The cleric said some of the robbers were armed with knives, while some were brandishing iron bars. Only one of the robbers had a pistol.

“They took away our cellphones and money.”

One of the robbers then identified Khumbula and force-marched him and his wife, Esteri Chirimba (35), to the main bedroom, where they loaded an undisclosed amount of money into bags.

“While they were in the bedroom, we heard a gunshot, but we could not do anything as we had been locked up in another room.

“The robbers then drove off in Khumbula’s Honda Fit vehicle which was parked outside. Moments later, his wife came out to announce that her husband had been shot.

“We hurried into the bedroom and found him seated on the bed. He could not speak and we noticed that he was having difficulties in breathing.

“After hearing the gunshot, a neighbour came to check on the Khumbulas. So we used his car to ferry Khumbula to hospital. Unfortunately his condition deteriorated and he died before we got to the hospital,” said the man of cloth.

“It was a painful and frightening encounter. However, Khumbula was murdered while in prayer, just like Stephen. He will find rest in heaven. These criminals will not know peace because they have killed a God-fearing man,” he said.

“Their mission was to rob him of his wealth, and they got it. Why then did they kill him? Maybe Khumbula had identified them,” Bishop Mandendera said.

When they sped off in Khumbula’s vehicle, the robbers were involved in an accident near the 22km peg along the Mutare-Chimanimani Road in Marange.

However, they managed to escape into the nearby villages.

Detectives handling the case revealed that some passers-by and other motorists offered to help the injured robbers at the accident scene, but they refused.

“They took the bags which were loaded with money and disappeared. Only a handful of $1 and $2 bond coins were left in the vehicle,” said the source.

Manicaland provincial police spokesperson, Inspector Tavhiringwa Kakohwa said detectives were following several leads.

“Investigations are underway and at this point in time we are appealing to anyone with tips to come forward and share the information with us,” he said.

Khumbula’s widow is still in a state of shock and could not share her experience with the media.

Share This:

Sponsored Links