Liberty Dube Weekender Correspondent
TWO Mutare women — one of them six months pregnant — are lucky to be alive after they were last week kidnapped and brutally assaulted by assailants allegedly hired by a friend who accused them of stealing $360 from her.
Primrose Sigauke and Nomatter Chinawa from Zimta Park high-density suburb were held hostage for four days by their adversaries who were arm-twisting them to repay the money.
While in captive at House Number 3560 Hobhouse, the complainants were heavily assaulted by five suspects who took turns to beat them up. They were fed with mango fruits, sadza and soup.
Chinawa, who is pregnant, sustained serious injuries from the attack. A medical examination done on her revealed that she sustained serious internal injuries. Sigauke had bruises all over her face and she struggled to sit properly as a result of injuries she sustained.
When The Weekender visited the duo on Wednesday in Zimta Park, they struggled to chronicle the horror they experienced at the hands of their assailants. Chinawa opened up first. She said she was dipped in a tank full of water as the attackers forced her to admit to stealing the missing money.
Together with Sigauke they were ordered to quickly gulp five litres of water each as the suspects were using available arm-twisting tactics to make them submit to their demands. According Sigauke the whole saga began following a visit by a friend.
“A friend called Linda Madzime who resides in Hobhouse visited us on New Year’s Eve driving a Toyota Runx. She told us to accompany her to Rowa to help her slaughter a beast. We returned later during the day and proceeded home.
“We were shocked the following day when Linda texted me alleging that we had stolen $360. She said she wanted the money back otherwise she would take unspecified action to recover it. We professed ignorance over the case but she could have none of what we were saying,’’ said Sigauke.
Four days later on January 4, two men who identified themselves as Elliot and Zenzo visited the women and told them to accompany them to Hobhouse to see prophets over the stolen money.
“When we arrived at the said house we were shocked to see more than 10 people in the house, including Linda. They told us that were going nowhere until we repay the money,” she said.
Some of the culprits were identified as Mai Madhuku, Mai Mazikani, Naome, Michy, Mercy, Bongani, Elliot and Gabriel Mutasa.
“They started whipping us. They asked us to return the money they said we had stolen. It was so painful. They forced us to lie with our stomach fully aware that I was pregnant. These people occasionally called some people whom they claimed to be police officers. The “officers” would then tell us to release the money. They only released us to relieve ourselves and further detained us thereafter. Mutasa was the ring leader, he was so aggressive.
“The following day, Mutasa, dipped my head in a tank full of water. They also forced us to drink five litres of water each. We would vomit but they would ask us to continue drinking. One of the days they took us back to our house in a kombi and took away a passport, $30 and some clothes,” said Chinawa.
On another day, she added, Mutasa, Bongani and Linda forced them to drink beer to “relieve stress” but they refused to take it.
“On the fourth day, early in the morning, we had a knock at the gate and Elliot went there to check. Fortunately for us, he opened the gate without checking who was knocking. We thanked God that about seven soldiers — some of them who were not in uniform — entered the premises. We explained our ordeal and we were released,” said the two corroborating each other.
The case has since been reported to the police. Some of the alleged culprits were arrested and would appear in court soon facing kidnapping and assault charges.