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Father Ordered for Psychiatric Evaluation After Allegedly Biting Off Daughter’s Face

Thobekani Mpofu

Father Ordered for Psychiatric Evaluation After Allegedly Biting Off Daughter’s Face

A 26-year-old man from Tsholotsho has been ordered by a Bulawayo High Court judge, Justice Christopher Dube-Banda, to undergo psychiatric examination after allegedly biting off and consuming part of his one-year-old daughter’s face in a suspected case of witchcraft.

The accused, Mongameli Nkomo, reportedly fell into a trance during the incident, claiming that his daughter, Andile, was a goblin threatening to harm him. The tragic event took place on February 20, 2023, around 8 p.m. at the grandparents’ home in Masekesa Village under Chief Gampu in Tsholotsho.

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According to High Court records, Nkomo’s partner, Miss Nokulunga Mhlanga, visited his homestead that night, as they are customarily married despite living apart. Nkomo allegedly woke up in a trance-like state, believing that goblins were about to attack him.

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During the episode, Nkomo attacked Miss Mhlanga, biting her fingers and hands before aggressively snatching their daughter from her. He then proceeded to strangle the baby while biting and screaming for help.

Neighbors, Ms. Soneni Tshuma and Mr. Vundu Nkomo, rushed to assist upon hearing the commotion. They found Nkomo strangling the baby outside his bedroom hut. Despite attempts to subdue him, Nkomo maintained his grip on the child’s neck until the baby became lifeless.

Post-mortem results revealed a deep cut on the baby’s forehead, with part of her mouth and chin missing. The missing flesh was not recovered, leading to suspicions that Nkomo chewed and swallowed it during the ordeal.

Nkomo’s violent behavior and the gruesome nature of the incident have raised concerns about his mental state, prompting Justice Christopher Dube-Banda to order a psychiatric evaluation. The court will further assess Nkomo’s mental fitness as the legal proceedings continue.

The tragic case has shocked the community of Tsholotsho, highlighting the urgent need for mental health awareness and support, especially in cases involving extreme behavior like this.

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