A staunch believer in Christianity intended to fast for 40 days and 40 nights like Jesus Christ but is understood to have been reported dead on what was to be his 30th day of fasting.
Reinfirst Manyuka (73) from village 9, Summerton under Chief Zimuto in Masvingo reportedly left home on 15 June this year headed to the bush to conduct prayers, redirecting his attention to God, away from things of the earth.
Manyuka was known by his family and community at large as a very spiritual person whose faith could move mountains. His death puzzled those dearest to him. A close relative who chose to speak on condition of anonymity broke the news.
“He was a very spiritual man. It’s unfortunate he had to die this way,” said a close relative. Manyuka was driven to the wilderness by the urge to emulate Christ but sadly he did not equal or break Christ’s record.
“After a month we got the sad news of his death,” added the relative. Family members said Manyuke had no history of illness. “He was a healthy and religious old man who did not even look his age,” revealed one family member.
The exact day of his death remains a mystery to both his family and friends as he was alone in the wilderness. His body was found by a stranger who then alerted the police. The police said Manyuka is not the first to die from fasting , numerous other cases have been reported.
“We have received such reports before, but we cannot stop the public from fasting,” said the acting Masvingo police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Nkululeko Nduna who confirmed Manyukas’ death.