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Suspected ‘Tsabana’ killer remains in jail

BATTERED AND BRUISED: Xabue during his first court appearance last year

A young man accused of murdering his three-year-old nephew, allegedly hacking the little boy in the head with an axe after a row over tsabana porridge, has been further remanded in custody.

21-year-old Onkgopotse Chavila Xabue has been languishing behind bars since his arrest on 14 October 2020.

On that bloody day almost a year ago, police arrived at Piijinaa cattlepost on the outskirts of Matsitama village to find Xabue tied to a tree and bleeding heavily after furious residents beat him to within an inch of his life.

He is alleged to have hacked his sister’s child to death after she refused to give him the boy’s medical card so he could collect tsabana from the clinic.

A year in prison seems to have suited the suspected killer well. He looked fit, healthy and even a little overweight as he appeared before Francistown Magistrate Court on Tuesday seeking bail.

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Xabue will be dining in on prison food for at least another month, his half-hearted bail bid turned down because he failed to give reasons why he should be freed.

Explaining this to the seemingly confused accused, Magistrate Thabang Chokwe said, “By virtue of bringing the application for bail, the accused should give reasons for his bail application but by not doing do, it leaves the courts with no choice but to reject his plea.”

Chokwe also pointed out it was unclear where Xabue, who lived with his mother and siblings before his arrest, would be accommodated should he be given bail.

“The accused failed to tell court whether he has other relatives to stay with when granted bail, so his plea is dismissed,” stated the Magistrate, setting Xabue’s next court appearance for 7 October.

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