Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Court Reporter
SERIAL killer Rodney Tongai Jindu yesterday stunned a court in Bulawayo when he revealed that he sliced off some body parts and also removed the brains of his two victims before eating them.
Jindu (26) of Glengarry suburb in the city made headlines eight months ago in connection with the deaths of Mboneli Joko Ncube and Cyprian Kudzurunga.
He allegedly shot dead Kudzurunga (28) of Queens Park East on January 29, buried him in a shallow grave in Burnside suburb and sent a message to the deceased’s mother pretending to be her son who had suddenly decided to leave the country.
Jindu, who is facing two counts of murder, also allegedly stole Kudzurunga’s laptop and cellphone which he sold in the city centre.
He also allegedly shot Ncube and dismembered the body and set the parts on fire before burying them in four shallow graves.
Jindu’s trial before Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Nokuthula Moyo yesterday failed to take off after the judge ruled that he should be examined by two doctors to ascertain his mental condition in terms of the Mental Health Act.
This was after he claimed that he ate human flesh.
“The accused person’s conduct is prima facie bizarre and abnormal. It is for these reasons that the court finds it fit that a mental examination be conducted to rule out any possibility of mental issues. This will allow the court to proceed to try the accused person after having been satisfied that he is mentally stable,” ruled Justice Moyo.
In his defence through his lawyer, Mr Tanaka Muganyi of Tanaka Law Chambers, Jindu told the court that after killing the two victims, he hired two men to dig the graves. He said the two men assisted him to place the two bodies in shallow graves.
“After shooting Kudzurunga and Ncube on separate occasions, I hired Makesure Mguni and Phathisani Ngwenya to dig the graves. They assisted me in placing the bodies in the graves. After they had left I sliced the bodies and consumed them including their brains,” he said.
Jindu, who appeared calm despite a packed courtroom, told the court that he regretted committing the two gruesome murders.
He said he was intoxicated when he committed the offences after allegedly taking heroine and methamphetamine, a synthetic drug used illegally as a stimulant and as a prescription drug to maintain blood pressure.
Jindu said he developed the urge to murder his two victims so that he could experiment following an alleged general assumption that killing a human being resulted in a mental deficiency.
Jindu was arrested in June after inconsistent statements to the police after Kudzurunga went missing. He allegedly later confessed to killing the two victims and led police to their shallow graves.
According to State papers, on January 12 this year, Jindu drove to a local supermarket situated between Robert Mugabe Way and 11th Avenue and met Ncube.
They proceeded to Burnside suburb, but the motive of the trip was not mentioned in court papers.
The court heard that on arrival in Burnside, Jindu pulled out an Optima pistol serial number 13752 from his car and allegedly shot Ncube twice on the chest and he died on the spot.
He then chopped the body into pieces before burying him in four different shallow graves.
It is the State’s case that on January 29 this year, Jindu was in the company of Kudzurunga walking from Glengarry to Queens Park East. The court heard that Jindu was armed with an Optima pistol serial number 13752.
After walking for a while, Jindu, who was walking behind Kudzurunga, fired one shot from behind and shot him on the head and abdomen twice and he fell down and died on the spot. He took his cellphone and laptop.
After realising that he had killed his friend, Jindu rushed back home and hid the pistol and the now deceased’s laptop in his workshop. He took a wheelbarrow and returned to the murder scene. He shoved the body into a plastic bag, loaded it onto the wheelbarrow and pushed it back home.
He later drove to Burnside where he secretly buried the body at a vacant residential stand. Jindu took the deceased’s cellphone and laptop and sold them for $400.
Police investigations led to his arrest and he confessed that he killed the deceased and made indications which led to the recovery of the body.
The stolen goods and firearm used in committing the offences were recovered.