AN 18-year-old Gwanda teenager has been arrested after he allegedly axed a neighbour’s five-year-old son to death over an undisclosed issue.
Matabeleland South provincial police spokesperson, Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele, confirmed the incident which occurred on Sunday at around 9AM in Matulungundu Village.
He said Otshugile Clinton Moyo had accompanied the boy, Obedingwa Sibanda, to a garden where he is suspected to have struck him with an axe on the back of his head and left him for dead.
“I can confirm that we are investigating a murder case which occurred in Matulungundu Village on Sunday. The now deceased who is a five-year-old boy went to play at a neighbour’s homestead where Otshugile Clinton Moyo who is the suspect also stays,” he said.
“The boy later went to his mother’s garden nearby to carry out some errands and Moyo accompanied him. After a while, Moyo returned home alone without the boy. Some children from the neighbourhood later reported to the boy’s mother that they had found the juvenile lying on the ground in a pool of blood.”
Chief Insp Ndebele said the mother and other villagers rushed to the scene and found the boy unconscious. He said they rushed him to a nearby clinic where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
Chief Insp Ndebele said the boy sustained a deep cut on the back of his head. He said Moyo had been arrested and was assisting police with investigations.
“Moyo has been arrested as a suspect and he is assisting police with investigations. We continue to urge members of the public to desist from carrying dangerous weapons as in this case an axe was used in committing the offence. We are still within a period of a ban of these weapons throughout the province and we urge people to adhere to this directive,” he said.
In an interview the councillor for Ward 16 which also covers Matulungundu Village, Jairos Mahopolo, said Moyo has a history of mental illness which is known throughout the village.
“Moyo is known as someone who has a mental problem. At times he acts normal and at other times the condition manifests. The boy who died lived at a nearby homestead and he normally played with a boy who stays at Moyo’s home and therefore he used to interact with Moyo on many occasions.
“Because of his mental problem Moyo has tendencies of being violent but this rarely happens. On the day that he went with Obedingwa, we don’t know what could have angered him which caused him to attack the boy. The villagers received news about the incident after some boys who were playing in the area came across Obedingwa’s body lying on the ground.”