Whinsley Masara Chronicle Reporter
A SECURITY guard heroically rescued a Bulawayo woman from a man whom he caught allegedly raping her and trying to strangle her on Sunday at around 1AM.
The woman (name withheld) nearly choked in the savage early morning assault that occurred in an apartment at Crescent Court near the Bulawayo Power Station before Dickson Nungu used a sjambok to subdue the suspected rapist.
Nungu of Mpopoma, a guard at Esats Store close to the crime scene said he intervened after hearing the woman screaming for help for more than 30 minutes.
“I heard prolonged screams of a woman at the flat opposite my work place. For a while I thought probably it was some patient from the nearby 24 hour surgery,” he said.
“After hearing the pleading cries begging someone for help for more than 30 minutes, I got worried and stood up trying to figure out where exactly the screams where coming from.”
Nungu said he discovered the screams were coming from a neighbouring apartment when he saw scores of tenants peeping through their windows.
“I went straight to a door on the ground floor where I asked what was happening. Some tenants said they had been involved in skirmishes with robbers countless times and so wouldn’t take the risk of stepping outside to save whoever was in trouble,” he went on.
“I asked where exactly the screams were coming from and they said usually it would be in the corridors heading upstairs.”
The Good Samaritan said he rushed back to his workplace where he armed himself with a sjambok and went straight to the scene.
He said he was prepared to save the victim who sounded so much in pain, no matter the risk.
“When I went up the corridor, I found a man who looked in his 30s with his pants below his knees — raping and throttling the woman who was almost unconscious.
“The woman who said she was 26-years-old was bleeding from the nose, mouth and had a big cut on her shoulder,” said Nungu.
He said the moment the assailant saw him, he tried to take out something from his pockets but he did not give him the chance as he feared he could take out a dangerous weapon.
“I immediately struck him once with the sjambok and he tried to retaliate, coming towards me before I gave him a second stroke.
“By then people were all over the place. Still pants down, he went onto his knees and begged for forgiveness but I quickly handcuffed him,” said Nungu.
“In no time the police were there and arrested him. Upon asking him a few questions, he responded using signs like he was deaf and dumb.”
Bulawayo provincial police spokesperson Inspector Precious Simango said:
“I can confirm receiving a report on rape and investigations are underway.”
The victim was said to be admitted to a local hospital.
A neighbour who only identified herself as MaTsha said they felt helpless because they could not open their doors, which were close to the scene to save the woman.
“It’s unfortunate we’re not safe and are endangered at that apartment because of its proximity to bars and night clubs where criminals hide.
“So many times tenants have been left nursing wounds after trying to save people at night,” she said.
MaTsha said the woman only revealed her age and that she had been drinking at Waverley Hotel.
“Amongst the crowd were some girls who said they had seen the assailant an hour earlier picking up the woman from the floor in the bar and carrying her on his back.
“They said they thought the two knew each other.
“The woman had begged this man to stop but it’s clear he raped her and she didn’t know him,” she said.
“It’s never wise for women to drink until they pass out because probably had she been sober she could have managed to fight this vicious man.
“Imagine had it not been for this brave man, she could have been killed.”