Background

Pius Jamba, real name Pius Mukandi, was a resident of Nyatsime in Beatrice. He was identified by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) as the main suspect in the murder of Moreblessing Ali who was a member of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) and a community leader in Ward 21, Chitungwiza North.

Mukandi is related to Simbarashe Chisango, who is said to be a well-known ZANU PF activist in Chitungwiza.

His mother is Laina Mukandi of Plot 321 Dunnotar Farm in Beatrice where he dumped Ali's remains in a disused well before disappearing from the area.

School/ Education

No information could be found on his Junior or High School, or any tertiary education.

Murder Allegations

On 30 May 2022, ZRP national spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi issued a statement which said Mukandi had a scuffle with Ali following a misunderstanding over the latter's dog.

The incident occurred on 24 May 2022, at around 9 PM at Chibhanguza Shopping Centre, Nyatsime in Beatrice, where Ali had gone to drink beer with her friend Kirina Mayironi.

Mukandi is reported to have had a scuffle with Ali and he dragged her before the two disappeared into the darkness.

On 16 June 2022, Assistant Commissioner Nyathi announced the arrest of Mukandi in the Chidamoyo area, Magunje, Mashonaland West Province, his mother’s home area.

Mukandi (31) had been in hiding since 24 May 2022 when he was last seen dragging Ali from Chibhanguza Shopping Centre.

Police initially claimed that Mukandi and Ali were ex-lovers but it later emerged during Mukandi's court appearance that it was the first time for him to see the deceased.

Mukandi appeared at the Harare Magistrates Court on 18 June 2022 before magistrate Dennis Mangosi.

The State alleged Mukandi took the now deceased from the vicinity of the nightclub to an unknown secluded place and struck her with an unknown object, before strangling her to death and cutting her body into three pieces.

Mukandi allegedly took the dismembered body parts to her mother home and dumped them into a well before fleeing to Magunje.

He was arrested before he could to sell a grinding mill to raise transport money to Zambia or Mozambique

Mukandi was remanded in custody to 1 July 2022 and advised to apply for bail at the High Court.

Political affiliation

It was reported that Mukandi was a member of the ruling ZANU PF party but this was refuted by the party's political commissar, Mike Bimha. He said:

I got some reports that the culprit got apprehended and the culprit is in no way one of us, and what I gather is that the opposite is true of those people who had been attacked first.

References

1. Blessed Mhlanga, Moreblessing Ali murder suspect not in our structures – ZANU PF, NewsDay, published: June 16, 2022, retrieved: June 20, 2022

2. Desmond Chingarande, Revealed: ‘Killer’ was not Moreblessing Ali’s lover, The Standard, published: June 19, 2022, retrieved: June 20, 2022