A 32-year-old Zambian man in Lusaka and his 22-year-old sister who have lived as a couple for eight years and have two children together are on the verge of being incarcerated for not less than 15 years after a magistrate convicted them of incest.
Lusaka Magistrate Faides Hamaundu convicted Alivad Mumba and Miriam Hara of incest and committed them to the Lusaka High Court for sentencing.
Magistrate Hamaundu committed the two to the High Court because she does not have powers to impose a sentence beyond seven years.
Between 2014 and October 6 last year, Mumba had carnal knowledge of Hara knowing she was his sister. In the second count, it is alleged that between the same dates, Hara had carnal knowledge of Mumba, who, to her knowledge, is her brother.
The two denied the charges and the State called five witnesses to testify against them. Evidence is that Mumba and Hara, born in a family of eight and sharing a mother but having different fathers, initially lived at their parentsâ village in Petauke.
But in 1997, Mumba left the village and started living in Lusaka with his aunt while Hara also left the village in 2012 and started living with her older brother Leonard Mwanza in Lusaka.
The court heard that while Hara was aged 16, she met Mumba at Chongwe clinic, where both went to seek medical attention. After Hara asked for water, Mumba offered the drink and the two started communicating.
Hara later visited Mumba to help with house chores after he informed her that he had differences with his wife, who was rarely home. Evidence is that the two later started living as husband and wife until their affair was exposed by a relative.
The court heard that despite being told that the two were related, the âcoupleâ paid a blind eye and claimed that they had never been relatives and repeated the response in their defence after being found with a case to answer in court.
But DNA results and the duoâs mother Enala Mwanza confirmed that the now convicts are blood relatives. Passing judgement, magistrate Hamaundu said the prosecution proved the cases against Mumba and Hara beyond doubt.
She said the fact that Hara concealed the birth of her two children is proof that she was aware that she was in an incestuous relationship, which is against morality.
Magistrate Hamaunda also said Mumba knew that Hara is his sister because there is no way he could have lived with her for eight years without knowing about her family background. âIt is impossible that the duo lived together for eight years without being visited by relatives.
The two were then sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.