Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Reporter
A ZIMBABWEAN man employed as a manager at a restaurant in South Africa died after a disgruntled subordinate he had allegedly fired for misconduct melted his face with sulphuric acid.
Ndumiso Luphahla (32) succumbed to the injuries on Monday last week a few days after being admitted to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Johannesburg following the horrific attack, allegedly at the hands of Maxwell Moyo.
Ndumiso was buried yesterday at Luveve Cemetery in Bulawayo.
When a Chronicle news crew arrived at Ndumiso’s home in Magwegwe West yesterday, there was a handful of mourners who had remained behind to comfort the bereaved family.
According to Ndumiso’s family, Moyo, who is now on the run, had a feud with the deceased whom he accused of influencing their boss to fire him following a disciplinary hearing. Ndumiso and Moyo were both employed at Ocean Basket Restaurant in Johannesburg.
It is alleged that Moyo, who was a waiter, was fired by the management together with five others for misconduct.
Moyo was angered by his dismissal and he allegedly later returned to his former workplace with an unknown accomplice and confronted Ndumiso before pouring the acid on his face.
“When he came to his former workplace, Moyo was carrying a bottle of acid and he confronted Ndumiso and started accusing him of influencing his boss to fire him.
“During the dispute, Moyo poured the chemical on Ndumiso while other employees watched helplessly,” said Mr Freddie Luphahla who is the deceased’s uncle.
Mr Luphahla yesterday told Chronicle his family was dealt a heavy blow following the death of Ndumiso who was their breadwinner.
“My nephew died a painful death on Monday last week at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Johannesburg where he was admitted after sustaining severe burns as a result of the acid attack. South African police informed us that the suspect is still on the run and we suspect he could have skipped the border,” he said.
“What is even more painful is that Ndumiso left behind a young family which solely depended on him.”
Ndumiso is survived by his wife and two minor children aged seven and 10.
Ndumiso’s brother, Arnold said when they took the deceased to hospital he had difficulty in breathing. He was hospitalised for 10 days under intensive care.
Ndumiso allegedly caught Moyo together with his colleagues stealing beer and money.
He informed the owner of the restaurant. A disciplinary hearing was conducted resulting in the six men being fired.