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Zimbabwe Demands #JusticeForSypho, A Slain Dancer & Cellphone Dealer

Zimbabwe Demands #JusticeForSypho, A Slain Dancer & Cellphone Dealer
The callous murder of artist, dancer, video beau/model and cellphone dealer Sipho Ncube has been greeted with a huge amount of commentary on social media, with many users on the micro-blogging site Twitter using the hashtag #JusticeForSypho to demand that […]

The callous murder of artist, dancer, video beau/model and cellphone dealer Sipho Ncube has been greeted with a huge amount of commentary on social media, with many users on the micro-blogging site Twitter using the hashtag #JusticeForSypho to demand that justice be meted out. The much-loved Harare hustler was allegedly slain by a tweenaged trio that comprised of Masvingo High Court judge Justice Garainesu Mawadze’s son, Munyaradzi Junior “MJ” Mawadze, Elvin Dongo Saungweme and Dellon David Balani, all aged 22.

Appearing before the Harare Magistrate’s Courts on Thursday afternoon, it was the State’s allegations that the trio hatched a plan to rob Sipho of his mobile phones and cash on the 12th of March. Accordingly, they lured him into their car claiming they wanted to buy three cell phones, each of which was priced at US$1 800.

Unbeknownst of the forthcoming fate that waited for him, Sipho agreed to accompany the three to Waterfalls and the accused diverted the route and drove along Chiremba Road passing Epworth going towards Ruwa. Whilst along Chiremba Road, they reached a secluded place where they robbed Sipho of his cellphones and cash. The State alleged that they ultimately stabbed him with a knife, slit open his throat thereby killing him instantly, and dumped Ncube’s body at someplace in Ruwa before MJ cleaned the bloodstained vehicle and vanished to Masvingo.

After Ncube went missing, his relatives reportedly filed a police report two weeks ago. A report was made at Harare Central police station and investigations were launched which led to the recovery of the vehicle used during the commission of the crime. Searches were conducted at MJ’s place in Harare leading to the recovery of a pair of black jean trousers, white vest and a pair of white sneakers all soiled with blood.

On March 24, MJ was arrested in Masvingo and brought to CID Homicide in Harare where he was interviewed. He implicated his accomplices Saungweme and Balani, as well as admitted to the allegations before they made indications to the police on how they committed the crime. They led the police to the crime scene in Ruwa and Sipho body was discovered on Wednesday.

While the case was being heard out before court on Thursday, Zimbabweans on twitter flooded the microblogging platform with tributes to the slain hustler at the same time kicking off cyberactivism that petitioned justice for the deceased as heralded by the use of the #JusticeForSypho hashtag.

Zimbabwean Music Events Co-ordinator and former manager for RnB sensation Garry Mapanzure, @goddy_mbb shared a video clip of Sipho dancing to Cassper Nyovest‘s “Good for That” song and wrote:

“Just a few weeks ago this was shot and you were excited as everyone tagged @casspernyovest with Hope’s that yall would work soon…….Little did we know you would be abducted and murdered by these kids like this… RIP Sipho #justicemustbeserved #justiceforsypho(sic).”

Sexual and Reproductive Health and Right/Gender-Based Violence advocate Floridah R. Mapeto said people did not need to know Sipho to understand his plight.

“This story is heartbreaking and you don’t have to have known him to sympathize. This is not the Zimbabwe we want nomateer how bad things are #justiceforsypho(sic)”.

Musician-cum-fashion-designer and founder of Saints of God (SOG) fashion label John Tendai Mazhinye aka Jay Tee said the hustler taught him to ride a hoverboard and “never had problems” with people.

“One person I know who always had a clean cut everytime you see him was Sypho. He taught me how to ride a hoverboard & never had problems with anyone. Rest in peace young King Broken heart @syphoworldwide #justiceforsypho.”

Here are some of the tributes from Twitter.

It could be said that the popularity of the #JusticeForSypho hashtag logically implies that contrary to the admission of crime that Mawadze, Saungweme and Balani did, justice might be compromised because the accused comes from a background of judicial privilege as his father is a Masvingo High Court judge. What is not forthcoming is whether this belief is premised on a beyond reasonable doubt formula, a balance of probabilities standard, or a more intuitive sense of right and wrong.

The required burden is beyond reasonable doubt. It is more than a technical rule; it is a guaranteed right which must be complied with by the court in reaching its conclusion. The justifications for this threshold include a recognition of the freedom and good name of every individual, the dangers of a wrongful conviction, and the dissymmetry in power between the State as prosecutor and the individual defendants.

ImChris Charamba

Head Storyteller at Enthuse Afrika. Balances literary writing with pop culture experience. Captivates raw, authentic sights, moments, feelings and conversations. Follow me on Twitter @ImChrisCharamba 

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