Chivi Rural District Councillor Tongai  Mafuzhe (67) of Mhaka village under headman Madzivire in Chivi has been convicted of causing malicious damage to property he viciously thrashed and killed a neighbour’s goat.
The Magistrate expressed shock at the cruelty to animals shown by a man who is supposed to be a community leader and called for the stiffest sentence on him.
The Magistrate ordered Mafuzhe to pay $25 restituition for the goat, spend three months in jail or alternatively pay a fine of $25.
Chivi Magistrate Bishard Chineka found Mafuzhe guilty of beating up David Muza Magombedze’s goat and setting dogs on it leading to its death on March 15 this year.
Although Mafuzhe had been initially charged by the Police for cruelty to animals the charge was altered to malicious damage to property because that charge only applies if one is the owner of the animal according to prosecutor Adrien Chikerema.
The Court heard that on March 15, 2016, the complainant was on his way to the grazing lands escorting his donkeys when he passed through the accused’s field and saw him beating his (complainant) goat with a log all over and letting his dogs bite the goat. He allegedly said that the goat destroyed his crops.
Muza stopped Mafuzhe from beating the goat which later on died.
The value of the goat was put at $25. The magistrate chided Mafuzhe for being cruel to animals and also wondered how he handled people as a leader when he beats up animals like that.
Chineka also said that he (accused) does not deserve to walk out of the court with any money on him hence he made pay the fine and replaces the complainant’s goat.