|Husband sets wife's huts ablaze|
|Friday, 13 July 2012 07:23|
A CHIPINGE mother whose daughter benefitted from the First Lady, Amai Grace Mugabe's scholarship programme was left with nothing after her estranged husband allegedly set her two huts ablaze last week.
The Chipinge District police spokesperson, Sergeant Clothing Ncube, confirmed the incident and said a manhunt has since been launched for Ms Gladys Sithole's husband, Aaron Zabha who is believed to be behind the arson attack.
The couple is said to have been embroiled in a domestic dispute for a long time, resulting in Zabha allegedly burning Ms Sithole's two huts.
In an interview, Ms Sithole, said she was left with nothing as everything went up in smoke.
"I only survived the arson attack with the clothes on my body. All my property was destroyed. I am glad that I am alive because Zabha wanted to kill me since he first tied the door from outside with a wire.
"He first torched my kitchen hut, but due to the fact that I was fast asleep, I did not even know what was happening outside. I was awoken by the light emanating from the fire and at first I thought it was daylight, but the heat coming from outside was just unbearable and I sensed danger," she said.
Sithole said she used a stone which was inside the hut she was sleeping in to break the door after she struggled to open it for some time.
"I rushed to the door and discovered that it was tied from outside. If it was not for the stone which I used to secure my door from inside, I might be history now," said a visibly traumatised Ms Sithole.
After escaping from the burning hut, Sithole and other villagers tried to put out the fire but they failed to save anything from the two huts.
Sithole who is now staying with well wishers in Mutikwanda said her misunderstanding with Zabha came after she caught him in bed with his girlfriend only identified as Florence.
"I left Zabha at home for two weeks and went toÃ‚Â Makandi Estate to get financial assistance from my brother since my daughter who is doing Grade Five at Chipinge Junior School was not feeling well.
"I delayed in coming back because my brother did not have the money and had to look for it from his friends. When I returned home last week at around 7pm, I was surprised to find Zabha with Florence in bed and I ordered them to vacate the compound, but they refused to comply. Zabha later took all the foodstuffs and left in company of his girl friend to a nearby bush," she said.
It is understood that Zabha later returned at Sithole's place and tied the door from outside before setting it on fire.
Meanwhile, a Chipinge man was burnt to death last week after the candle which he had left burning torched his blankets before engulfing the whole grass-thatched hut where he was sleeping.
Sgt Ncube said Nikis Mathias Masukutu Rangwani of Plot Number 45, Landsdown Farm died in the inferno.
He said Rangwani who was employed at Tingamira Estate used to stay with his sister, Jane Rangwani (37) and he arrived home from work during the late hours of Wednesday and continued with his daily routine.
"After having supper, he retired to his bedroom hut and dozed off. His sister also retired to a separate hut. At around 3am, Rangwani woke up and proceeded to his sister's hut and enquired what time it was since he wanted to report for duty. He was told that it was still too early and he went back to his hut," said Sgt Ncube.Rangwani returned to his hut and slept, forgetting to put out the candle.
The other property in the hut caught fire and Rangwani failed to escape.
His neighbours tried to extinguish the fire, but their efforts were in vain.
"Our investigations showed that the fire started from the hut as a result of the candle which was left unattended and there was no foul play," said Sgt Ncube.