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High Court judge Justice Hlekani Mwayera blasted a 50-year old woman whom she stopped from undressing before a fully-packed court in a bid to prove that her pant was indeed dirty, while giving evidence in defence of murder suspect Pritchard Zimondi.

Zimondi is being accused of fatally stabbing his girlfriend Monalisa Chinomona in Chitungwiza in 2012 and police recovered from the suspect a pant and a bra, which the State held as exhibits.

Mrs Julia Chineka, an aunt to Zimondi, was testifying that the pant and bra that were recovered from Zimondi were new and that they had been taken from her wares.

She was trying to convince the court under cross examination that the undergarments did not belong to the late Monalisa, but they had just been taken from her wares as new and that Zimondi wanted to show them to his girlfriend before buying.

She was responding to questions that were being put to him by State lawyer Mr Editor Mavuto in cross-examination.

Mrs Chineka, who stays in Hatfield, Harare, told the court that the pant and bra recovered were new and she was stopped from undressing by Justice Mwayera as she held her dress to the waist, a gesture that the court viewed as unacceptable.

“Pant racho ranga riri nyowani and rakachena. Rakambopfekwa rinenge rakasviba. Ndikakubvisirai pant rangu randakapfeka iri (holding her dress by the waist)… ”

Justice Mwayera interjected before she finished speaking and reprimanded her.

“Stop being a comedian in this court of law! Why do you want to take off your pant before this court?

“Who asked you to do that? Being a 50-year-old woman who is treated with respect by the officers of the court, we do not expect that from you.

“You actually made a movement of your waist to take off your pant and we do not expect the elderly to behave that way.

“None of the officers has asked you to demean yourself in that manner,” said Justice Mwayera.

Mrs Chineka apologised to the court and the cross-examination resumed.

She was one of the three witnesses that Zimondi called to testify in his defence.

Before Mrs Chineka took to the witness’ stand, Zimondi’s sister-in law, Ms Sithabile Khumalo gave evidence narrating how she met Zimondi in Gweru on April 24, 2012, the day that he allegedly killed the woman.

She told the court that she met Zimondi at Amtec bus stop in Gweru where he had brought her two envelopes containing his academic certificates and medical card respectively.

Last year, Zimondi entered a plea of not guilty when the trial opened saying the woman could have been killed by her ex-lover identified as Vitalis with whom she was having squabbles with then.

Zimondi denied ever killing the woman, saying their relations were cordial and they actually had marriage plans.

Defence lawyer Mr Norman Mugiya said Zimondi was actually shocked and devastated to learn of the death of the woman because he loved her and that he had no reason to kill her.

Allegations against Zimondi arose sometime in April 2012 when he allegedly had a misunderstanding with his girlfriend Monalisa Chinomona (19).

It is alleged that on the fateful day, he went over to Chinomona’s place where she was alone in her bedroom.

Zimondi reportedly entered the house unnoticed, headed for the kitchen and armed himself with a kitchen knife.

He allegedly went to where Chinomona was sleeping and stabbed her with the knife 15 times on her left breast.

After the grisly act, Zimondi reportedly left the knife stuck on the woman’s breast and ran away.

Zimondi was later caught in Harare while trying to flee to Gweru.

It is alleged that Zimondi had Chinomona’s pant and bra on him.

Source : The Herald