Soccer fan kills referee


A 33-YEAR-OLD soccer fan from Gokwe, who killed an assistant referee in 2012 after he had ruled that his social football team had scored an offside goal, was yesterday slapped with a 23-year jail term for murder.


Onismo Muruvi Fichani struck the now deceased Isaac Mbofana with a 2,5m log on the head after he raised his flag to signal an offside after the killer’s team had scored.

High Court judge, Justice Maxwell Takuva condemned Fichani to 23 years in jail after convicting him of murder with actual intent.

In passing sentence, Justice Takuva said he could have passed a harsher penalty had Fichani not paid 25 out of the 38 beasts demanded by the deceased’s family.

He, however, said the 23 years were punishment enough for the senseless motive and Fichani’s failure to value the sanctity of human life. Prosecutor Mirirai Shumba told the court that on October 18 2012 at Joboringo Primary School under Chief Nemangwe in Gokwe South, Mbofana was officiating as an assistant referee at a social soccer match.

Fichani’s team, Tank Three, equalised in the first half against rival team Hotline.

In the second half of the match, Tank Three scored a second goal but Mbofana had raised his flag to signal an offside.

However, the referee of the match Cuthbert Zimbabwe allowed the goal to stand and the match ended 2-1 in favour of Fichani’s Tank Three team.

Angered by the linesman’s performance, Fichani ambushed Mbofana and struck him on the head with a log resulting in him collapsing and dying on the spot.