13 October 2017

Zimbabwe: Four Years On, Gweru Businessman Still Too Ill to Stand Trial for Killing Wife

Gweru businessman, Webster Chiteta, accused of strangling his wife in 2013, has once again failed to stand trial during the just ended High Court session because of poor health, NewZimbabwe.com has learnt.

Chiteta, 38, who also failed to stand in the dock earlier this year has not been able to attend his trial over the past four years because of ill-health.

Officials at the Gweru magistrates' Courts said Chiteta has been failing to answer to charges of killing his wife over the years because of poor health.

"He failed to attend trial at the High Court session that ended last week due to ill health,' one official said.

In September 2014, Chiteta, who had just been granted $1,000 bail, fled to neighbouring South Africa and was re-arrested in August 2015, but since then, he has not been brought to court for trial on medical grounds.

The businessman, who is popularly known as Dzatu and owns Camvalve Recovery Company, allegedly strangled his wife in still unclear circumstances.

The state alleges that on April 3, 2013, Chiteta retired to bed at around 1:30am. When his wife, Winnie Tracy Phiri, joined him in bed at about 3:30am, Chiteta allegedly strangled her before making a false report of sudden death at Mtapa Police Station.

However, a post-mortem report by a doctor revealed that death was a result of dislocation of the cervical spine and excessive movement of the neck.

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