A well-known Mutare medical practitioner, Isdore Kasongo Mwamba, allegedly facilitated the issuance of a false post-mortem report ostensibly to protect murder suspects, The Manica Post can reveal.
Kasongo, who was arrested on Tuesday night, appeared before Mutare provincial magistrate, Mr Tendai Mahwe, on Wednesday for allegedly defeating the course of justice and abuse of duty as a public officer as defined in Section 184 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 9: 23.
Kasongo (56) was remanded out of custody to November 15 on US$500 bail.
Part of his bail conditions include reporting every Friday at CID Mutare and not interfering with witnesses.
Mutare District Public Prosecutor, Mr Tirivanhu Mutyasira, said allegations against Kasongo stemmed from Collins Muchadya (23)’s murder case which was reported in Hobhouse 3 last week on Wednesday.
The court heard that the next day, Sergeant Chani Mutonhodza attended the scene and completed the ZRP Forms 231 (Application for Post Mortem Examination) in respect of the deceased Muchadya.
Mr Mutyasira said Sergeant Mutonhodza conveyed Muchadya’s body to Victoria Chitepo Provincial Hospital mortuary.
On the ZRP Forms 231, and on the circumstances death column, it was written that the deceased was assaulted with a log and sjambok several times all over the body.
It is alleged that upon receipt of Muchadya’s body, Kasongo and his accomplices — murder suspects Tawanda Gwata and Lee Dzitsi who are still at large — hatched a plan to defeat the course of justice.
Mr Mutyasira said Kasongo and his accomplices added on the ZRP Forms 231 that the deceased was a drug addict.
On the same day, Kasongo, Gwata and Dzitsi connived and went on to carry out a post-mortem in the absence of Sergeant Mutonhodza who had conveyed the body for the procedure.
Soon after carrying out the post-mortem, the accused person wrote a post-mortem report indicating that the cause of death was ‘indeterminate’.
Mr Mutyasira said Kasongo also stated that the late Muchadya had bruises on his body, with his body intact.
He said no other injuries were detected.
The court further heard that Kasongo’s actions raised reasonable suspicion of foul play, resulting in a request for a second post-mortem which was done at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals in Harare.
The second post-mortem was done by Dr Robert Guillier who concluded that Muchadya’s death was due to traumatic shock and poly traumatised due to excessive blows.
The post-mortem report Number 008533 was recovered at Victoria Chitepo Provincial Hospital Police Post and is held as an exhibit.
Also recovered was the application for post-mortem ZRP Forms 231 with Kasongo’s forged statement.
The court heard that last week on Wednesday, Muchadya was fatally assaulted by bouncers Gwata and Dzitsi who had been allegedly hired by his uncle, Jealous Mukorera.
Gwata and Dzitsi are on the run, while Mukorera, who is an accomplice in the murder case, was remanded in custody to November 15.
He was advised to apply for bail at the High Court.
Apparently, Mukorera and Muchadya stayed at the same house.
Manicaland provincial police spokesperson, Inspector Nobert Muzondo said: “The late Collins Muchadya stayed together with Mukorera and his wife, Ms Ropafadzo Chipeta, at the same house.
“On the fateful day, Collins Muchadya allegedly stole Ms Chipeta’s Toyota Aqua and drove it to an unknown destination. Muchadya later returned the vehicle and parked it outside the yard. Upon inspecting the vehicle, Ms Chipeta discovered that it had a scratch on the front left fender. When asked what had happened to the vehicle, Muchadya did not respond. Ms Chipeta phoned her husband (Mukorera), informing him about what had happened. At around 1pm, Gwata and Dzitsi arrived at Mukorera’s house. They asked about Muchadya’s whereabouts as he had left home.
“It is alleged that the two told Ms Chipeta that they would look for Muchadya and bring him back home.
“At around 5pm, the two came back with Muchadya and dragged him inside the house where they assaulted him using a wooden log and sjambok.
“While beating Muchadya, they accused him of abusing drugs. They also interrogated him on why he had stolen the car. Ms Chipeta and a passersby, Ms Shaulin Guti (38), tried to restrain the two to no avail. Gwata and Lee later left Muchadya in the bathroom outside the main house.
“Ms Chipeta later discovered that Muchadya was no longer breathing and informed his other uncle, Mr John Muchadya, who also stays at the same house. Mr Muchadya and Mr Peter Shumba carried the victim to his bedroom and placed him on the bed.
“Later that evening, Mukorera, Mr Shumba and Mr Muchadya proceeded to Hobhouse Police Base to report the matter,” said Inspector Muzondo.
According to Inspector Muzondo, bloodstains were observed in the sitting room, fridge, on the floor in Muchadya’s bedroom, in the passage and in the toilet.
When The Manica Post visited the scene the following morning, Hobhouse residents were gathered outside calling for the arrest of Mukorera and his wife.
The crowd also blocked the police from retrieving Muchadya’s body before Mukorera and Ms Chipeta’s arrest.
Residents insisted that Mukorera was hiding inside the house. They claimed that Mukorera had sent the bouncers to fatally assault his nephew.
They broke into song denouncing Mukorera and his wife.
A neighbor, who witnessed the beating, a Mr Gweru said: “We heard Collins’ screams from the road and it was a piercing sound. He cried and begged for forgiveness, but it all fell on deaf ears.
“As neighbours, we could not do anything as the men looked menacing. They were wearing balaclavas when they were assaulting Collins. They continued assaulting him and I told my friend that I doubted if Collins would survive that kind of beating.”
Another neighbour, Mr John Chawatama said it was not the first time that Muchadya was badly assaulted for his wayward behaviour.
“At one time, he was hospitalised for a month after he was disciplined by one of his uncles. Collins had turned into a drug addict but I do not think this was the most appropriate punishment for him. It was not his fault that his father died and left him an orphan,” said Mr Chawatama.
Muchadya’s aunt, who requested anonymity, said she met her nephew with the two bouncers in their car.
“I did not know that these men wanted to assault my nephew. I was later called and told that they were assaulting him. A few minutes later, I was also called and told that Collins had died. It is very painful,” she said.
Muchadya was yet to be buried at the time of going to print.
Source: Manica Post