Prison of­fi­cer in main­te­nance row

Sunday News (Zimbabwe) - - National/international News - Sukul­wenkosi Dube Plumtree Cor­re­spon­dent

A PLUMTREE Prison and Cor­rec­tional Ser­vices of­fi­cer has re­fused to pay main­te­nance for his twom­onth-old baby af­ter dis­put­ing the child’s pa­ter­nity.

Judge Sibanda told Plumtree mag­is­trate, Mr Tau­rai Man­were that he wanted to first con­duct a pa­ter­nity test af­ter his ex-lover Ms Ev­i­dence Sibanda dragged him to court de­mand­ing $100 main­te­nance for the up­keep of their child, Shatiso Ol­wethu Sibanda.

Mr Man­were, how­ever, or­dered Judge to pay main­te­nance while await­ing re­sults of the pa­ter­nity test.

“You can go for a pa­ter­nity test if you want but in the mean­time you will be pay­ing main­te­nance un­til the re­sults are out.

“In the mean­time you will pay $60 from now up to 30 March 2018 be­cause there are debts that you have to clear within that pe­riod. There­after you will pay $80 main­te­nance for the up­keep of your child monthly,” he said.

In her ap­pli­ca­tion Ms Sibanda had said that she wanted $100 main­te­nance to cater for the child’s food, gro­ceries, med­i­cal ex­penses, clothes, in­ci­dences and trans­port money to take the child to hos­pi­tal.

She said ever since the child was born, Judge had not con­trib­uted to­wards his up­keep. “He is just us­ing the pa­ter­nity test as an ex­cuse not to pay main­te­nance Your Wor­ship, but the child is his as he is the only man I had slept with at the time I con­ceived.

“Ever since the child was born he hasn’t con­trib­uted to­wards his up­keep but he is gain­fully em­ployed. I have tried to en­gage him sev­eral times over the mat­ter and he hasn’t been co-op­er­at­ing. I have been strug­gling to fend for the child on my own,” she said.

In re­sponse Judge said he doubted that the child was his. He said if he were to pay main­te­nance he could af­ford $40 per month as he had an­other mi­nor child to look af­ter.

“Be­sides, the money which the ap­pli­cant is de­mand­ing is un­rea­son­able. At two months a child doesn’t need all this money that she is de­mand­ing. I have other ex­penses as well and I can only af­ford to pay $40 main­te­nance,” he said.

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