Danisa Masuku, Sunday News Correspondent
A 36–YEAR–OLD commuter omnibus driver from Gweru died after he was assaulted by strangers after he reportedly passed derogatory comments towards them.
Acting Midlands police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Ethel Mukwende said Patrick Hove died three days after the alleged attack which happened on Sunday last week.
“We are investigating a murder case where Patrick Hove (36) was brutally attacked at Mkoba 17 leading to his death. So far we have not arrested anyone. As soon as we have any leads we will update you,” said Asst Insp Mukwende.
She appealed to anyone with information that may lead to the arrest of the suspects to contact police on 02542-22107 or 02542-2228636.
A family spokesperson, Ms Winnie Mugandani, an aunt to the deceased said Hove was dumped at his home — Mkoba 18 but died at Parirenyatwa hospital in Harare where he had been transferred.
“It was on Sunday at around 8pm and a kombi crew led by a guy called Jose came and hooted at the gate. They dumped Patrick at the gate and left,” she said.
Ms Mugandani said Hove staggered to his bedroom and his wife, Ms Blessing Chitiga, rushed to the living room to inform the other family members that Hove was bleeding heavily. “We rushed to check what was happening and found him lying on the bed groaning while clutching his stomach. He was bleeding from the mouth and his left eye was swollen. He had already messed himself on the bed,” she said.
The family took Hove to Gweru General Hospital where an X-ray was carried out.
“The following day on Monday he was transferred to Parirenyatwa hospital. I left him there. When I went to visit him on Tuesday he was breathing with difficulty. The doctor told us he was bleeding internally. On Tuesday he was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and he died on Wednesday at around 1am,” said Ms Mugandani.
Sources said Hove, popularly known as Bomber by his colleagues in the city was beaten after he allegedly laughed at three men who were walking with a woman in Mkoba 18 near Hove shops and passed a lewd comment questioning their virility. One of the men, family sources said, turned on Hove and brutally punched and kicked him.
“We are told at one point the man had his boot on Patrick’s neck while he pummelled him mercilessly. We hear he also stomped on his stomach while he lay on the ground,” said a family member who asked not to be named.
The family member said the attack was so vicious that doctors said he suffered multiple internal injuries.