By Matabeleland North Correspondent
A security guard who stole four cases of sugar weighing 80kgs from OK Mart in Victoria Falls has told the court that he was pushed by hunger as he has not received pay in the past five months.
Kholiwe Tshuma aged 33 and residing in Chinotimba suburb said his family was almost starving hence he wanted to sell the cases of sugar so he could buy groceries.
He said he earns $360 which is not enough to buy groceries.
“We haven’t been paid for five months and my family is now starving. We haven’t paid rent while it’s been two terms since my children last paid school fees. I wanted to sell the sugar so I could fend for my family,” Tshuma said.
His accomplice and workmate Melusi Mpala went into hiding and his whereabouts are not known.
The two are employed by Peace Security and connived to steal the sugar from Ok Mart Victoria Falls branch where Mpala was deployed.
Tshuma pleaded guilty to theft when he appeared before Victoria Falls magistrate Rangarirai Gakanje.
He was sentenced to nine months in jail of which three were suspended for five years on condition he does not within five years commit an offence of a similar nature.
The remaining six months were commuted to 210 hours of community service to be done at Victoria Falls Magistrates’ Courts.
Prosecutor Japhinos Tavengwa said the sugar was worth $1 132.00.
He said Tshuma bought airtime and used the same receipt to hoodwink shop staff into believing that he had bought 80kgs of sugar.
Mpala, an accomplice pretended to have checked the receipt.
The court was told that Tshuma was on duty on the day he committed the crime.
Tshuma and Mpala were caught on CCTV cameras.
Mpala disappeared after management replayed the video footage and established that he had deliberately not checked the receipts.
Tshuma was arrested after a report was made to the police.