Zimbabwean citizen Gerald Dube is set to hang following the Court of Appeal judges’ decision to dismiss his appeal against a death sentence on Wednesday.
Dube looked calm during the reading of his sentence, just as he did on the day he was sentenced to hang by a Francistown High Court judge for having killed Francistown lawyer, Patricia Majoko, and her children, Dumisani and Amotjilani, and their maid, Lindiwe Ncube, in September 2001.
Dismissing the appeal, the judges concurred that Dube’s Court statement, in which he claimed to have been suffering from epilepsy at the time of the commission of the crime, was false beyond reasonable doubt and was correctly rejected by the lower Court.
Dube’s actions, the judges said, had resulted from his expulsion from Majoko’s home and employment (he was employed as a driver and messenger in the law firm).
The expulsion, they said, had uprooted him from a lifestyle that was comfortable and which gave him the opportunity to convey the impression of some success and importance in his social circles.
The judges said that, as the Lower Court judge had found, Dube’s girl friend Vivian was demanding to a degree and that it could have heightened the loss of esteem he no doubt felt at having lost employment as he had told her that he was a lawyer.
They said Dube did not say he was angered and that he maintained that any difficulty between Majoko and himself in the past had always been reconciled.
They added that nonetheless his actions on the fatal day were probably motivated by revenge in view of the loss outlined above, saying that there is no reason whatsoever to regard the killing of Majoko as not being premeditated.
The judges said that having killed the children and the maid, Dube waited for a considerable time for Majoko to come home and, in that interval, he had ample time to reflect but he was not even deterred by what he had already done.
The judges said Majoko’s murder was motivated by anger at the challenges she had wrought on his life.
On the question of whether the other killings were less premeditated, the judges said that it was significant that the manner of causing death was identical in all the four instances.
The judges said that there seems to be two feasible explanations for the killings.
First, to remove future eyewitness evidence or to incorporate the killings of her children and maid in the scope of the overall action of revenge directed at Majoko.
They concluded that even the earlier killings were premeditated and motivated.
The state was represented by Mpho Letsoalo.