THE Chipata High Court has sentenced a 20-year-old man to death by hanging for causing the death of his friend after he hit him with a plank following a misunderstanding.

Jacob Manda was charged with one count of murder.

Particulars of the offence were that Manda between December 25 and 26, 2020 in Chipata, jointly and whilst acting together with others unknown murdered Henry Ngoma.

It is alleged that Manda hit Ngoma with a plank on the head following a misunderstanding.

The deceased sustained serious head injuries and died due to excessive loss of blood.

In his defence, Manda who was represented by a Legal Aid Board lawyer opted to remain silent on the matter.

The matter was before Lusaka Judge Gaudencia Salasini who sat in the Chipata High Court.

However, there was a contention that was submitted to the court on the identification of the accused, stating that Manda was not properly identified by the state witnesses as he has a twin brother who was on the run since the incident happened.

The lawyer argued that Manda was at his girlfriend’s place at around 19:00 hours when the alleged incident happened.

But Judge Salasini ruled that the identification of the accused by the two state witnesses who had known Manda for over five years was enough to identify the accused person on the crime scene.

She said the state proved the case beyond reasonable doubt that Manda committed the offence and convicted him accordingly.

“There is no doubt that the accused caused the death of the deceased by hitting him with a plank on the head and I therefore find you guilty as charged and I convict you accordingly”, Judge Salasini said.

She sentenced Manda to death by hanging on the neck until he is pronounced dead by a qualified medical doctor.

Judge Salasini stated that Manda will remain in lawful custody pending his execution.