Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Court Reporter
A BULAWAYO man who broke into his neighbour’s bedroom while he was asleep and axed him to death before attacking his brother on the forehead following a quarrel during a beer drink, has been sentenced to 12 years in prison.
Obhani Magiya (30) of Mfazimiti Mine in Nkenyani on the outskirts of Bulawayo stormed Admire Ndlovu’s house armed with the axe and found him sleeping with his brother Privilege Ndlovu.
Magiya struck Admire three times on the head and he died on his way to hospital. He also turned on Privilege whom he struck twice on the forehead before escaping.
Magiya, who was initially facing murder and attempted murder charges, was convicted of a lesser charge of culpable homicide by Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Francis Bere in connection with the death of Admire. He was sentenced to 10 years in jail of which three years were suspended for five years on condition that he does not within that period commit a similar offence. Magiya was slapped with an additional two years for attempted murder and the sentences will run concurrently.
In passing the sentence, Justice Bere said the courts have a duty to uphold the sanctity of human life.
“It was that systematic bullying against the accused person which authored the unfortunate demise of the deceased. In aggravation, the court must always be concerned where life is needlessly lost as in this case. The protection of human life is uppermost in the execution of our duties and life must be protected because it is sacred. No individual has the right to cut short a fellow human being’s life,” said the judge.
Prosecuting, Mr Trust Muduma said on April 17 this year, Magiya had a misunderstanding over an undisclosed matter with Privilege and Admire and it degenerated into a fight.
The court heard that Magiya was defeated and he ran away. The following day at around 3AM, Magiya armed himself with an axe and proceeded to a hut where the two brothers were sleeping.
“While they were sleeping, Magiya struck Admire three times with an axe on the head and attacked Privilege two times on the forehead before escaping,” said Mr Muduma.
Admire died on his way to Mpilo Central Hospital, while Privilege sustained a deep cut on the forehead. A report was made to the police leading to Magiya’s arrest in Insiza on April 22.—@mashnets.