Julia N`andu Court Reporter
MURDERING his 11-months-old baby as well as attempting to kill his ex-girlfriend and her son earned a Honde Valley man life imprisonment.
Together Rirwa (34) of Maunze Village was convicted of murder by High Court Judge, Justice Charles Hungwe last week.
In sentencing him, Justice Hungwe expressed shock at Rirwa’s heartlessness and convicted him of murder with actual intent, attempted murder and assault.
Justice Hungwe said he was appalled by the callous manner in which Rirwa killed his daughter, Tabeth.
He said Rirwa committed the heinous offence as a way of running away from paying maintenance.
Testifying in court, Rirwa’s ex-girlfriend, Foebe Mandeya, said: “My ex-boyfriend, Rirwa came to my place while drunk, but pretended to be sober. He said he wanted to see the child. I was not suspecting anything, but he suddenly turned violent. He grabbed my daughter and kissed her goodbye. He hacked her with a machete.
“He went on to strike my son who was asleep twice before turning his vicious attacks on me. Thinking that he had killed the three of us, he ran away. He left the bloodstained machete at my homestead.”
Justice Hungwe said as young as Tabeth was, she would not have provoked him to punish her the way Rirwa did.
Said Justice Hungwe: “The horrendous nature of the wounds that were on the child’s body speaks volumes of the inhuman treatment she went through.
“As if that was not enough, after you have forced entry into Mandeya`s room, you went further and crafted a web of lies which you told her. You lied to her that you wanted to see the child, yet you know what you wanted to do. You even lied to this court thinking that you will evade your befitting punishment,” said Justice Hungwe.
After killing the child and leaving Mandeya and her son battling for life, Rirwa tried to commit suicide by consuming an unidentified poison.
He was found groaning in pain by other villagers leading to his arrest.
Manicaland area prosecutor, Ms Jane-Rose Matsikidze prosecuted.