IN a mind-boggling case, a Honde Valley man disguised himself as a woman and was married for 16 good months while performing all the duties expected of a new bride.

The man at the centre of the storm, Morris Muchena, disguised himself as Emily Muswere from Murehwa and would even become intimate with ‘‘her husband’’, Andrew Chafa.

Morris was finally exposed in Honde Valley during a recent female soccer match between his team and another one from Chisuko Village — which happens to be his original village.

The nibble-footed Morris mesmerised football fans with his moves and dexterity. With all the spotlight beamed on him, his childhood peers identified him and let the cat out of the bag.

Morris was summoned by village head Madzinga, Mr Webster Mhuru, for a hearing.

Feeling cornered, Morris sheepishly confessed that he was indeed a man who had disguised himself as a woman.

He also said he is part of a satanic cult and claimed that he changes into a woman during the night in order to satisfy his ‘‘husband’’ in bed.

One of the soccer players who were in the match that was Morris’ undoing said they challenged him to remove his wig but he adamantly refused.

“We challenged him to remove his wig, but he refused. He said if he removed it he would disappear for 24 hours. We were frightened and waited for his husband, Andrew, to come.

“When Andrew arrived, he was shocked. He said he had not realised that he was sharing the same bed with a man. Andrew said it was the end of their marriage,” she said on condition of anonymity.

Another player chipped in: “We were so happy to have such a player on our team. He would dribble past three players before scoring and we were so proud of our star. He would always have a wig on, partially covering his face.”

Members of the Chafa family and villagers interviewed said they had suspected that Morris — alias Emily — was a man due to his masculinity.

Village head Madzinga said: “This is an abomination. Andrew got married to ‘Emily’ around November 2020. His family came to me and announced that they were welcoming a new bride into their home.

“I gave them the nod to proceed with the bride welcoming ceremony. I did not attend the ceremony, but I heard the celebrations went on very well. However, some questioned the new bride’s sexual orientation. Murmurs of disapproval were coming from around the village, but there was no way to prove if ‘Emily’ was a man or a woman.

“The recent soccer match exposed him. Female soccer players from Chisuko clashed with our local team and ‘Emily’ featured in our team. However, a player from Chisuko who grew up with Morris positively identified him.

“She queried why the local team had fielded a man. Everyone was taken aback by her claims. Upon the realisation that he had been exposed, Morris hid behind the women and covered himself with a cloth,” said Mr Madzinga.

He added: “A few days later, Morris’ relatives travelled from Chisuko and came to my place, saying they were looking for him. They said Morris had been evasive when they called him. He was no longer picking their calls.

“They asked to be led to the Chafa homestead to meet Morris but I sent people to summon him to my homestead. When he came, dressed like a woman, he denied knowing his two relatives. However, after being quizzed, he later confessed that he is a man,” said Mr Madzinga.

It is said Morris chronicled how he was initiated by a Harare friend into a satanic cult that enables him to turn into a woman whenever ‘her husband’ wants to be intimate with ‘her’.

He said following the initiation, he started having weird dreams; before meeting Andrew falling in love with him.

It also emerged that Morris was a teacher at a private school in Harare before he stopped reporting for duty at the time of his ‘marriage’.

He acquired his primary and secondary education in Chisuko, Honde Valley; then deserted his family two years ago.

Andrew’s mother, Ms Irene Bendere, said she was shocked to realise that her son had brought in another man as his wife.

“We were so happy when my son brought in his ‘wife’. We didn’t know that ‘Emily’ was a man for more than a year. However, I would often quiz my son about his wife’s masculinity. At times, I would even tease ‘Emily’ about her physical stature,” she said, adding that the family was hoodwinked by the new ‘bride’s’ perfect execution of household chores.

The Manica Post learnt that Morris would always avoid sharing a bathroom with women, but would watch them bathing from a vantage point.

“My son says Morris would refuse to be caressed, claiming that he would contract cancer. He had no boobs and he would wear padded bras. He even claimed that he had suffered a miscarriage of twins when she was in Harare while Andrew was in Honde Valley,” said Ms Bendere.

It is also said Morris would always ask Andrew to switch off the lights whenever they retired to bed.

The couple could not be contacted for comments as they were said to be in police custody.

Manicaland provincial police spokesperson, Inspector Nobert Muzondo confirmed the incident and said while investigations are still underway, it appears like Morris and Andrew were in a consensual same sex marriage.

“This is a clear case of sodomy. How can one’s organs change at night and revert back to normal during the day? It appears like they were consenting parties and that is homosexuality. These are some of the bizarre things that are happening in our communities. Society frowns upon such acts,” said Inspector Munondo.

The national constitution of Zimbabwe prohibits same sex marriages.