In a mysterious coincidence, Philip Mubatapasango and his wife Previous Sigodho, reportedly died on the same day under similar circumstances but in different places.
The married couple from Zimbabwe, were said to have been foaming in the mouth, bleeding from the mouth, nose and ears at the same time. They died less than an hour later, leaving their relatives in a state of shock.
Chief Inspector Phillip Checho, a district senior police officer, confirmed the deaths and said that the authorities are still trying to clear up what had happened. He said investigators were putting together statements of people who saw the couple before they died.
According to the police, Sosanna Mugwada, a family friend of the couple, had pleaded with them for a ride in Philip’s scotch cart as her 15-year-old grandson had fallen sick and needed to be taken to an hospital.
Before they could leave, Philip’s brother, Gift Madyirapanze, and his son arrived at the house and the five of them had a meal of rice and tea which had been cooked by Previous.
“After the meal, Previous decided she would not join her husband for the trip to Guruve since the scotch cart would not accommodate the four of us and the business stock. He (Philip) dropped us at a local mission hospital which is a few kilometres from Guruve Centre while he went on to do his errands and came back to fetch us after four hours. When we got to Guruve Centre, he inquired what my grandson had eaten. I told him he had had nothing since he was vomiting. Philip, however, went into a grocery store to buy a loaf of bread and offered the boy.
“He tried to jump into the scotch cart but his legs were shaky and weak. I asked him if he was feeling well but he failed to respond as he tried to get into the cart. He finally got in and sat on the edge, facing the opposite direction so that I could not see his face.
“After an hour’s distance, around 3.30 pm, I noticed a school girl from our village standing in the way of the cart. I could tell by the look on her face that something was terribly wrong; she then asked me why Philip was not blinking. I then turned him around and his eyeballs seemed like they were going to pop out and his mouth was wide open.
“I laid him down in the cart and he started grunting and frothing. After some time, blood started oozing out of his mouth, nose and ears. I got confused and did not know what to do. I quickly summoned the girl to lead the cattle back home to Philip’s wife,” Sosanna Mugwada said.
At that time Philip’s wife was also going through the same agony. Neighbours found the woman bleeding and frothing after being alerted by a passerby, who reportedly heard strange noises coming from the couple’s house.
“We found her face down around 3pm, frothing. After some time, she started bleeding from the nose, mouth and ears. That was when we decided to send someone for her husband,” one of the neighbours said.
Meanwhile, most residents of the village where the couple lived suspect that the couple died as a result of witchcraft.
Philip’s brother also thinks that someone was jealous of their small business and decided to bewitch them.