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Man jailed for raping daughter-in-law (Nnholo we Mwizana)

by Court Reporter
30 Jun 2012 at 10:16hrs | 4962 Views
A man from Dongamuzi area of Lupane district who indecently assaulted and raped his daughter-in-law under the belief that he was fulfilling a custom commonly known as 'Nnholo we Mwizana' has been jailed for 15 years.

The man, aged 47, pleaded guilty to three counts of indecent assault and one count of rape before Hwange resident regional magistrate Mrs Dambudzo Malunga on Thursday.

Asked why he committed the offence, the man told the court that he was fulfilling his Kalanga custom as his father had also slept with his wife.

Asked if the daughter-in-law (18) had consented, the man said she did not consent because she is not Kalanga.

The prosecutor, Mr Bheki Tshabalala, told the court that sometime in February this year, the man's son left for South Africa to look for employment.

He left his wife in the custody of his father and mother and during the month that the son went to South Africa, the man proposed love to the daughter- in-law but was turned down.

He proceeded and fondled her breasts until the left one became swollen. She did not report the assault to anyone.

Later on the same day, the daughter-in-law left the homestead going to fetch water and the father-in-law followed her. He made advances towards her but was again turned down.

He tried to fell her but he was overpowered and the daughter-in-law later made a report to her mother-in-law, who reprimanded the man.

During March he again fondled her breasts and one day he found her bending down washing some dishes and approached her from behind and grabbed her private parts.

He said: "Khathesi isigcwala isandla. Sunonile wena."

She ran away and made a report to his wife who in turn reprimanded him.

On 16 April, the mother-in-law left her homestead going to a neighbour's homestead to assist harvest some ground nuts and left the husband, daughter-in-law and five children behind.

During lunch time, the complainant went to serve him his food and as she knelt down to give him his food he fondled her breasts forcing her to run out of his sleeping hut where he was seated.

Thinking that the father-in-law had left the homestead, she went into the sleeping hut to collect the plates and as soon as she entered the door, the man, who was stark naked hiding behind the door, pounced and threw her onto the bed.

He forcibly removed her panties and raped her once but she kept struggling until she managed to free herself and ran out of the sleeping hut leaving her panties behind.

She made a report to her mother-in-law who then escorted her to Dongamuzi police base where a report was made leading to the father-in-law's arrest.
Source - TC

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