|'Ku-Jays' beside the car he recently won|
In 2008, Mabeka won a grinding mill from Delta’s Eagle brand before winning $100 and a DSTv decoder with a full bouquet month’s subscription in the Omo ‘Fly and Wash’ competition.
He was also presented with a vuvuzela and a soccer ball.
The latest edition of The Sunday Mail has his picture in Harare receiving his DSTv decoder from OMO representatives.
Dumisani Mabeka had earlier participated and won small prizes that included T-shirts and cartons of cigarettes in a Pacific competition and a solar light in an Econet competition.
On Monday Dumisani “Kujays” Mabeka of Mutapa Section 6 high density suburb in Gweru died mysteriously at around 11 am at his house, leaving behind not only his considerable pickings but also many unanswered questions.
Questions have been raised with friends and relatives suspecting foul play while the general public suspects he had necromantic (magical) powers that could now have backfired on him.
Dumisani’s sister, Tendai said the family remained baffled by her brother’s ‘mysterious’ death and have several unanswered questions.
“We are still failing to come to grips with our brother’s death,” she said.
She related how Mabeka came back from Harare on Sunday after winning a Nissan NP300 truck at the Castle Tankard draw conducted on Saturday.
Mabeka had left home on Thursday going to Bulawayo for the OMO washing powder draw where he won a DSTv decoder and a $100, a vuvuzela and a soccer ball. He then proceeded to Harare on Saturday where he won the Nissan NP300 double cab truck.
When he came back, he had drinks with friends celebrating his new car.
The following day, he told his children that he wanted to rest and went to his bedroom.
“My young sister, Rumbidzai visited him around 11 am to congratulate him and found him unconscious with his heart beating fast. She then called an ambulance but he died before they could render him first aid. He was taken to Gweru Provincial Hospital mortuary,” Tendai said.
Tendai said her brother’s life solely depended on lucky draws and he had built a life on his good fortune.
“My brother was naturally gifted. He last worked for Coca Cola a long time ago and started participating in lucky draw competitions. We didn’t see anything sinister. He won in virtually every competition he entered and was famous for his string of fortunes.
“My brother would look for beer bottle tops anywhere and enter as many entry forms as he could in competitions.
He was not ashamed of doing that. Today, while we accept that it is God’s decision of deciding our time on earth, we’re also relieved that he leaves us without the burden of worrying how we are going to take care of his children. He has a grinding mill that he won in earlier competitions before winning two cars recently,” she said.
Tendai said the family suspected foul play.
“We suspect that someone became jealous of his series of fortunes. We are suspecting foul play because he never complained of any ailment and had never been hospitalised or diagnosed of anything,” she said.
Mabeka’s neighbour who refused to be identified said the now deceased was a controversial character and was once jailed.
The neighbour said it was after Mabeka came out of prison that he started having a string of fortunes.
“Mabeka was an enigmatic character. He was once jailed. He suddenly changed after he was released from prison.
“He started to have a string of fortunes winning big prizes in most competitions he entered. Everyone in the community suspected that he was using juju,” said the neighbour.
This is a view shared by many others.
“We suspect that Mabeka could have been using necromancy in his shenanigans. That is no mere coincidence that he won in virtually every competition he participated. Most people these days are going to South Africa where they are given supernatural powers that enable them to do miracles and sometimes inexplicable things. Most people have accumulated wealth after having visited witchdoctors who endow them with such powers,” said Mr Leonard Mashamhanda.
Midlands Traditional Medical Practitioners Council Chairman, Mr Fanuel Nyashanu said Mabeka could have fallen victim to necromancy. He said he might have failed to honour commitments that he made when he was given the supernatural powers.
Explained Nyashanu: “Cases of people who visit witchdoctors to help them amass wealth have become rampant in Zimbabwe. We have heard of lot of cases in which people visit these witchdoctors and end up plunging into problems in which they fail to extricate themselves.
“Mabeka might have failed to honour the commitments he made or could have skipped a certain procedure as prescribed by the witchdoctor. This, however, does not rule out the possibility of him having been bewitched by a jealous friend or relative.
“Considering that he had a string of fortunes, there is a high likelihood Mabeka was using supernatural powers to amass wealth and it later backfired on him,” he said.
Gweru Provincial Hospital Medical Superintendent, Dr Fabian Mashingaidze said Mabeka was not immortal, lucky or not.
“Every human being has to die at some point. Having a knack of winning prices does not make any human being immortal. That is not a remedy to avoid death.
“I never got hold of the post-mortem results which becomes difficult to explain but if he was choked it means he might have encountered respiratory complications and failed to seek early medical treatment,” he said.
. . . tragedy of lottery winners
Every week, millions of people buy lottery tickets in the hope that this week, finally, it will be their turn to win big. But is being a lottery millionaire all it’s made out to be? Not according to this sorry bunch… WHO wants to be a millionaire? Most people, surely (except billionaires of course). But sadly, winning a truck-load of money on the lottery, any lottery, comes with a heap of baggage. Daydreams of a millionaire lifestyle seem to have a habit of turning sour faster than a sub-prime mortgage – isolation, paranoia, drugs, crime, poverty and prison await those who fail to adjust, as this top ten of ‘Lottery Losers’ shows:
1. Jack Whittaker won a record $314.9m Powerball jackpot in 2002. But life since then has been a long list of arrests, lawsuits, broken relationships and even death. In 2007, his then wife, Jewell admitted she wished she had ‘torn up the ticket’.
2. William “Bud” Post won $16.2 million in the Pennsylvania lottery in 1988. He later described the experience as a ‘nightmare’ and wishes it had never happened – who can blame him after he was sued by a former girlfriend eager to get her hands on the cash and his brother hired a hitman in the hope of inheriting the winnings. He invested in ill-fated family businesses and within a year was $1m in debt. Today he gets by on social security payments.
3. Luke Pittard from Wales won a ‘measly’ £1.3m on the National Lottery. After the novelty had worn off and the obligatory lavish holiday, wedding and new home were done and dusted, he got bored and returned to work at MacDonalds.
4. An as-yet-unnamed Sicilian won £79m on the Italian lottery in 2008. Before he or she could even collect the winnings consumer groups were demanding that the windfall be seized by the government. The winner has since gone into hiding, fearing the Mafia will come calling.
5. Janite Lee won $18 million in 1993. Her generosity in giving money to a variety of political, educational and community causes was commendable – but just eight years later she filed for bankruptcy.
6. Mark Gardiner from London won £11m in 1995. Thirteen miserable years later, he hasn’t lost his money, but he has lost all his friends – even the ones he treated to new £100 000 homes – and lost touch with his family.
7. Michael Carroll won a £9.7m National Lottery jackpot in 2002. Since then he has appeared in court more than 30 times and been jailed for drug related offences. In 2008, he admitted that ‘just’ £500,000 of his windfall remained.
8. Willie Hurt won $3.1 million in 1989. Two years later the money was gone and he was on a murder charge. Hurt spent his fortune on a divorce and crack cocaine.
9. Charles Riddle won $1 million in 1975. The original lottery car crash, he quickly got divorced, faced several lawsuits and was eventually indicted for selling cocaine.
10. Ken Proxmire won $1 million in the Michigan lottery. He moved to California, and invested in a car business with his brothers. Five years later, he was bankrupt and back working as a machinist. — Herald/Agencies.