By Mary Taruvinga
A Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) officer Anastasia Rwafa is restless after she was implicated by her nephew who is serving a 60-year jail term for murdering his brother, friend and girlfriend in ritual killings.
Her nephew, Brian Mupaiki from Chivhu, 30, is serving 60 years after he was convicted in 2018 for the heinous crimes.
He admitted to having killed one of the three victims but court found him guilty of all three counts.
Mupaiki said he was initiated to be a ritual killer by Rwafa, her sisters and brothers.
But she is denying the allegations.
Rwafa has approached the courts and slapped ZimPapers and StarFM presenter Tilda Moyo with a US$150 000 lawsuit for causing publication of the allegations in November last year.
She also wants the video in which Mupaiki was interviewed taken down including all written articles arguing that she has become a social outcast following the publication of the ritual killings.
“On or about October – November 2018, defendant and through its employee…during the course and scope of her employment duties, published certain defamatory statements aimed at tarnishing the plaintiff’s image and standing in society and at work,” read part of her summons filed by her lawyers, Munangati and Associates at the High Court.
“The defamatory statements were received and generated by defendants for an interview at Chikurubi Maximum Prison with one Brian Mupaiki and through an interview conducted by Moyo during the scope of her employment.
“The defamatory statements which are false, unsubstantiated, shocking and not to the public’s benefit were to the effect that plaintiff is a murderer. That she has acquired her wealth by means of murder and selling native human body parts across the borders. That plaintiff practices witchcraft.
“As a result, the plaintiff has been shunned and persecuted among her colleagues, at work and church given her Christian religious affiliation. The publications had an effect of lowering the plaintiffs estimation in the eyes of ordinary right-thinking Zimbabweans and beyond.
Rwafa said she had to undergo employer paid counselling sessions in an attempt to recollect herself from emotional pain and suffering caused by the publication.
She said she also had to undergo several hearings and declaration of assets to the employer and auditors threatening her employment since the publication.
“Her life station has been negatively affected and her family strained in relations,” read the summons.
Her lawyers said Zimpapers should have verified the information before publishing.
They also submitted that nothing concerning her social life should have been mentioned.
In addition, Rwafa said she tried to have the published information retracted to no avail and has suffered damages in the sum of US$150 000.
She prayed for an order compelling Zimpapers to “publish and circulate on all its platforms for a period of seven days during prime time and on the front pages of its publications, a written apology to her for defamatory publications made against her”.
She further said the apology must be that she is not a murderer, and did not acquire wealth through dealing in or selling human body parts and does not practice witchcraft as published earlier by Zimpapers.
Rwafa wants Zimpapers to withdraw all defamatory material from its internet platforms and to settle costs of suit.
The plaintiff comes from the same village with Mupaiki and are related.
Narrating how he landed in jail, Mupaiki told StarFM that he was initiated by his uncle and aunties including Rwafa.
He went on to narrate how this happened and how he killed his brother, girlfriend and friend in a horror tale.
In the chilling story, Mupaiki said he would collect right eyes, small intestines, kidneys, tongues as well as blood of the victims.
He said Rwafa and her sisters would sell the parts outside the country.
Mupaiki also confessed that he was dumped by his aunties after he refused to kill his wife because their baby was only three months old.
He said he saved his wife by divorcing her since his instruction was to kill people close to him.
Mupaiki said he was given US$20 000 by his aunties after committing murder.
He said he was supposed to get three kombis on top of the US$20 000 but his aunties refused to pay.
In the interview, Mupaiki begged the police to pursue the case and arrest his aunties for ruining his marriage and bringing bad omen to his family.
Rwafa’s case is yet to be entertained.