Men­tal in­sti­tute con­fine­ment for woman who bashed neigh­bour’s child

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Andile Tshuma

A 32-YEAR-OLD woman from En­tum­bane sub­urb in Bu­l­awayo who al­legedly as­saulted her neigh­bour’s 10-year-old daugh­ter has been con­signed to a psy­chi­atric in­sti­tu­tion for 15 months by a Bu­l­awayo mag­is­trate.

Gra­cious Machin­gura pleaded not guilty to an as­sault charge when she ap­peared be­fore Western Com­mon­age Mag­is­trate Mr Abed­nico Nde­bele.

A psy­chi­a­trist rec­om­mended that she be ad­mit­ted to a men­tal in­sti­tu­tion for 15 months.

Machin­gura was smil­ing through­out the court ses­sion and could not hide her joy as Mag­is­trate Nde­bele told her that she was not go­ing back to re­mand prison but would be ad­mit­ted to Ingut­sheni Cen­tral Hos­pi­tal.

“You will be ad­mit­ted for 15 months at a psy­chi­atric in­sti­tu­tion. They will as­sess your men­tal health. You will not be go­ing back to prison now,” said Mag­is­trate Nde­bele.

Pros­e­cut­ing, Mrs Char­ity Ny­athi said Machin­gura hit her neigh­bour’s daugh­ter with a stone, as­saulted her with fists on the head be­fore hit­ting her against a wall.

This was af­ter the girl ac­ci­den­tally bumped into Machin­gura’s son while they were play­ing.

“Med­i­cal re­port at­tained proved that com­plainant sus­tained se­vere in­juries. There was in­ter­nal bleed­ing that can cause con­stant headaches,” said Mrs Ny­athi.

Machin­gura told the court that she did not as­sault her neigh­bour’s daugh­ter but she tripped as she tried to flee from her.

“Your Wor­ship I never laid a hand on that child. My neigh­bour’s daugh­ter tripped my son with her foot caus­ing her to fall. My son cried then I drew closer but she fled. As she was run­ning she fell and hit against a du­rawall. That’s how she sus­tained those in­juries,” said Machin­gura.

“We haven’t been liv­ing peace­fully with my neigh­bours. I sus­pect they told their chil­dren to beat my chil­dren. This feud has been go­ing on for the past five years. My hus­band and I di­vorced be­cause of them.”

Machin­gura said her neigh­bours used to shout from their houses urg­ing her hus­band to beat her up and leave her.

“They were jeal­ous of my mar­riage. They caused my hus­band to beat me un­til he left. They said I was un­wor­thy to be a civil ser­vant’s wife be­cause I was un­em­ployed. Now I live alone be­cause of them,” she said.-@andile-tshuma

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