A 44-year-old landlord, Mgcini Sibanda, was allegedly beaten to death by his tenant, Mnkandla, in Nkulumane 10, a high-density neighborhood in Bulawayo. According to reports, Mgcini had given Mnkandla notice to vacate his family home in January 2023, but Mnkandla refused to move out.
On 18th March 2023, a disagreement arose between Mgcini and Mnkandla over the tenant’s continued stay in the property, and the latter reportedly attacked the landlord with an unknown object. Although Mgcini sustained injuries, he did not report the matter to the police or seek medical help. Mnkandla fled the scene after committing the alleged offence.
Mgcini was found dead the following day by a neighbor, sitting on a toilet seat with two cuts on his forehead, bruises on both knees, and bloodstains on his left arm. Mnkandla, who is believed to be an illegal gold panner, also known as “makorokoza” or “magweja,” these are known for their violent and dangerous actions, which have become a nuisance in most communities.
Mgcini, who was based in South Africa, had returned home in January to stay. He was a friendly person who got along with most people in the neighborhood and the community. The incident has left neighbors and friends in a state of shock and bewilderment.
The ZRP spokesperson in Bulawayo Province, Inspector Abednico Ncube, urged members of the public to resolve their disputes amicably instead of taking the law into their own hands. Illegal gold panning has been a significant issue in Zimbabwe, and authorities have been cracking down on these activities to curb violence and criminality associated with it. The incident is a stark reminder of the need for better regulation and monitoring of illegal activities in Zimbabwe.