THE man from Tsholotsho in Matabeleland North province who set ablaze two bedroom huts where six of his nieces and nephews were sleeping after having a dispute over inheritance with his brother has been sentenced to 5 years imprisonment.
Ephram Mlotshwa (41) appeared before Bulawayo regional magistrate Vivian Ndlovu facing a charge of attempted murder. He pleaded not guilty but was convicted. 18 months of his sentence was suspended for 5 years and he will serve an effective 30 months.
The court heard that on 12 October 2022 and at around 10pm, Zanda Mlotshwa was at Tsholotsho Business Centre when he received a call from his wife Sandisiwe Ndlovu that his brother Ephram was burning their homestead.
After receiving the call, Zanda rushed to his homestead where he found two bedroom huts that his children were sleeping in on fire. He managed to rescue the children but the property that was inside was reduced to ashes.
When Zanda inquired from his wife, she told him that she had seen Ephram burning the bedroom huts and she also indicated the direction which he had used to escape from the scene.
He then teamed up with some local villagers and they tracked down Ephraim’s footprints which went towards the business centre. They managed to apprehend him and the footprints matched with the shoes that Ephram was wearing.
The matter was reported to the police and investigations were carried out leading to the arrest of Ephram.
The value of damaged property is $7 500 000 and nothing was recovered.