POLICE have exhumed the body of a 24- year-old Shurugwi man who was tied to a tree and tortured for allegedly stealing 70 grammes of gold worth US$3 400 at Bred Farm.
Fabian Mabhugu died on March 1 while admitted to Gweru Provincial Hospital from injuries sustained following his alleged 24-hour torture at the hands of thugs hired by miner Willard Mugadza.
Mabhugu was exhumed on Saturday at the instigation of his family who have requested a second post-mortem to validate the first report.
Mugadza briefly appeared before Shurugwi resident magistrate Ms Sithabile Zungula on Thursday facing one count each of murder and abduction.
He was remanded out of custody to March 24 on $1 000 bail.
Mabhugu was a part-time driver for Mugadza popularly known as Dread Welly.
He was allegedly abducted together with his friend Lenny Hwehwe (25) after their boss claimed they had under-declared gold by 70 grammes
Mabhugu’s elder sister, Theresa, said her brother’s body which had been laid to rest at Mount Dore Cemetery at Bonza Farm in Shurugwi last Thursday was exhumed on Saturday by the police.
Theresa said the post-mortem report which was produced before Ms Sithabile Zungula during the brief appearance of Mugadza cited the cause of death as undetermined.
“Yes, my brother’s body was exhumed by the police on Saturday and taken to Harare for a second post-mortem opinion since we were not happy with the first post-mortem result which said that the cause of his death is indeterminable,” she said.
“The post-mortem was done by a Bulawayo pathologist and as a family we felt that it was flawed and as a result allegedly influenced the High Court’s decision to order the lower court to release Mugadza on bail.”
She said her brother, who was allegedly tortured while tied to a tree, had visible marks from his head to the toe.
“We therefore wonder why the pathologist would say the cause is indeterminable. So, we lodged a complaint after the release of Mugadza from prison and we were given police officers who guarded the grave from the day it was buried until it was exhumed,” said Theresa.
“We were shocked to see the post-mortem report being produced in court on Thursday when as family, we had been told by the police that it was going to be ready for collection the following day.”
It is the State case that Mabhugu and Hwehwe were allegedly driven to Chirumanzu where they were tortured over two days.
Mabhugu was allegedly stripped naked and tied to a tree.
Acting Midlands Provincial spokesperson Assistant Inspector Ethel Mukwende said police are investigating several individuals who participated in abducting Mabhugu and Hwehwe.