A HONDE VALLEY man has been sentenced to life imprisonment after he brutally hacked his wife with a machete four times after she took his cellphone without his consent.
Jim Kwaramba (37) of Matsapa Village in Honde Valley was recently convicted of murder with actual intent as defined in Section 47 (1) (a) or (b) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 9.23, by Mutare High Court judge, Justice Isaac Muzenda.
Mr Malvern Musarurwa prosecuted.
The court heard that Kwaramba murdered his wife, Ms Miriam Joni, on October 28, 2022 after hacking her with a machete on the right shoulder, mouth, chest and the lower back part of the head.
A forensic pathologist at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals in Harare who conducted the post-mortem examination on Ms Joni’s body, Dr Yoandry Olay Mayedo, concluded that the cause of death was due to acute anemy, right neck vessel section and severe neck trauma due to contused wound.
While testifying in court, a witness, Ms Rita Bwina who was the couple’s neighbour, said on the fateful day at around 2am, she heard a scream from Kwaramba’s homestead.
She said she went close to the homestead and called out to Kwaramba, but there was no response.
Ms Bwina then proceeded to inform Kwaramba’s mother, Ms Kandala Maluwiza, about the scream.
“When l went to Kwaramba’s homestead with Ms Maluwiza, we saw that the bedroom door was open. From where I was standing, I observed Ms Joni’s naked body lying in a pool of blood with a deep cut on the right shoulder and mouth.
“I also observed two packed bags, water buckets and plates scattered on the floor,” she said.
Ms Maluwiza also stated that on the day in question, she had counselled her son and his wife over a marital dispute.
“My son informed me that the late Ms Joni had declared that his motorcycle would not start without her consent. I advised them to live peacefully, and the couple agreed to bury the hatchet. They went to their homestead which is about 250m away from mine.
“At around midnight, the couple’s children came to sleep at my place. I went to my son’s homestead to ask why they had sent the children to my place during that time of the night.
“My son told me that his wife had packed her belongings and wanted to return to her parents’ home. I left the couple alone and went back home. On the same day at around 2am, my son came to my homestead and informed me that he was leaving.
“He said I should take care of the children. He then left. When I went to their homestead after being called by our neighbour, I found Ms Joni’s naked body lying in a pool of blood.
“She had sustained a deep cut on the right shoulder, chest and mouth. Two packed bags and plates were scattered on the floor,” she said.
Another witness, Ms Netsai Njozomile, Kwaramba’s cousin, said before the murder, she had tried to solve a domestic dispute between the two.
“Earlier that day I tried to solve a domestic dispute between the two. Kwaramba was saying his wife had taken his cellphone without his consent and was refusing to return it.
“I asked my sister-in-law to return the cellphone and she complied. However, later on, Kwaramba told me that he intended to go to Mozambique.
“I accompanied the couple to Ms Maluwiza’s homestead where they narrated their dispute to her. Kwaramba alleged that the late Ms Joni had declared that his motorcycle would not start without her consent.
“Ms Maluwiza advised them to return home and live peacefully. However, the next day at around 3am, I was informed of Ms Joni’s death,” said Ms Njozomile.
However, despite the overwhelming evidence and testimonies against him, Kwaramba insisted that he was innocent.
In sentencing Kwaramba, Justice Muzenda said the gruesome act deserved nothing less than life imprisonment. – Manica Post