Fight over ‘stolen’ washing powder destroys 40-year marriage

30 Aug, 2019 - 00:08 0 Views
Fight over ‘stolen’ washing powder destroys 40-year marriage


Melissa Chekwa

A FTER 40 years of marriage, a Bulawayo couple can’t stand each other in their seemingly crumbling marriage so much that “missing” packets of washing powder were enough for the husband to drag his wife to court.

Themba Sibanda of Bellevue suburb dragged his estranged wife Thandeka to the Bulawayo Magistrates’ Court for allegedly nicking his washing powder, R200, a car registration book and documents belonging to their child, who is based overseas. 

The husband stays in the cottage while the wife uses the main house. 

Appearing before magistrate Sheunashe Matova, Thandeka denied theft and unlawful entry charges brought before the courts by her estranged husband Themba. 

Allegations against her were that she broke into her husband’s cottage and stole various items.  

The elderly man narrated how Thandeka allegedly lost her marbles after she saw him walking with another woman who stays in the same suburb. 

He openly told the court that he was in love with the other woman and had spent the night at her place. 

“I was coming from a sleepover at my girlfriend’s place when my wife confronted us and demanded to know where I was coming from and she started being uncontrollable, screaming at the top of her voice.

“Because of her strange behaviour, my girlfriend and I were forced to retreat to where we were coming from and Thandeka left and headed home,” said Themba. 

He said as a result of his wife’s actions and threatening behaviour, he feared for his life and decided to report the matter to the police.

“On our way from Hillside Police Station I discovered that my clothes had been dumped at my girlfriend’s place and I went back to the law enforcement officers for assistance with a case of unlawful entry since I was the only person with keys to the cottage,” he continued. 

He said he discovered that a list of items, among them, washing powder and cash in foreign currency were missing. 

In her defence, Thandeka was quick to dismiss the allegations levelled against her.

“I used the small amount of washing powder to clean the walls, floors, carpet and the toilet in the cottage. I never took anything else.

“My husband suffers from insomnia, he is very forgetful and this one time he lost his national identity document but accused me of stealing it until he found it in one of his wallets,” said Thandeka.

The court dismissed the charges levelled against the wife on the basis that there was no direct evidence linking her to the theft. 

Thandeka was in court last month after Themba’s girlfriend, Soneni Khumalo, sued her for harassing her over her relationship with her husband. Magistrate Sheunesu Matova granted a binding order in which he ordered the two women to keep peace with each other by not conducting themselves in a manner which is likely to breach peace. 

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