A 60-YEAR-OLD Hwange man who allegedly inserted fingers into his 14-year-old daughter’s privates before rap_ing her claiming he was checking her virgi_nity has appeared in court charged with three counts of indecent assault and one each of aggravated indecent assault and rap_e.
Virgi_nity testing is a cultural practice done by some ethnic groups around the world including Zimbabwe, to determine whether a girl or woman has had se_xual intercourse or not before.The man who cannot be named to protect the complainant, pleaded not guilty when he appeared before Hwange Regional magistrate Mr Collet Ncube.
He claimed that the charges were fabricated by the complainant’s mother and grandmother tofix him following a misunderstanding over lobola.
The accused and complainant’s mother separated.
The complainant used to stay with her maternal grandmother until Grade Six when the accused took her so she could live with him in Lwendulu village, Hwange.
The complainant’s grandmother who also cannot be identified, said she couldn’t believe her son-in-law’s actions.
“One day I was passing by and the complainant saw me and started crying. She showed me a diary where she had documented the abuses by her father. She told me that the accused said some people had told him that she was no longer a virg_in hence he wanted to prove for himself,” said the grandmother in court.
The court heard that the shameful father would allegedly order his daughter to share the bedroom with him after which he would se_xually abuse her.
The accused allegedly ordered the complainant not to leave the house and reportedly assigned a neighbour to guard her, the court heard.
“She told me that her father threatened to kill her if she told anyone about the abuses and she wrote everything in a book which she showed me and other witnesses. She was crying when she narrated her ordeal and she is traumatized as people talk behind her back saying she slept with her father,” narrated the grandmother.
The magistrate remanded the man, who is out of custody on bail, to this Friday for judgment.
Prosecuting, Mr Vumizulu Mangena said the accused committed the crimes between July 18 and July 24 last year when the two were alone at home.
“On 18 July at around 10PM the complainant was sitting on a sofa watching TV when her father told her that he wanted to check if she was still a virg_in. The complainant refused and told him to take her to her grandmother for virgi_nity testing. The accused insisted that he had powers to check her daughter’s virgi_nity,” said Mr Mangena.
The court heard that the accused went on the se_xually abuse his daughter on separate days and she complied out of fear.
The girl’s mother reported the matter to the police on July 29 leading to the arrest of the accused. A medical report presented in court showed that the girl had been se_xually violated.
Mr Devaris Ncube of Legal Aid Directorate is representing the accused.