Ntcheu Senior Resident Magistrate Court, on December 2, convicted and sentenced a 28-year-old man, Salimoni Chitedze to 18 (eighteen) years imprisonment for defiling an eight year old niece at Nzangaya Village, Traditional Authority Njolomole in the district.

Representing the state, Sub Inspector Beatrice Kankhuni, told the court that Salimoni Chitedze, is a real brother to the victim’s mother.

She continued to tell the court that it was on September 27, this year at around 1500 hours when the victim was defiled.

It was also heard that the victim’s mother organised maize flour meant for the children’s lunch and handed it to the Chitedze as a guardian at that particular time.

Mother to the victim left home in the morning for the garden leaving the victim and other two children in the safe hands of Chitedze.

However, when Chitedze prepared the food (Msima) during lunch time, with the kids around him, he made some conditions for the young lads to agree first in order for them access the food.

He told them that who ever wanted to taste his nsima, should first agree to having sexual intercourse with him soon after taking the food.

Being kids, and not knowing what will really transpire, they blindly accepted the condition.

And, being the only, at least the aged girl, 8, among the rest, soon after the food, the accused grabbed by hand the victim into their grandmother’s house where he defiled her.

In her submission, Kankhuni asked the court not to be lenient when passing sentence.

She cited the circumstances that led to the committing of the offence as premeditated.

She also said that the trauma that has been caused to the young girl, will keep on haunting the victim for the rest of her life.

And also said that Chitedze betrayed the trust, both the victim and her mother had put in him.

In mitigation, he prayed for lesser punishment saying he is a bread winner and at the same time first offender.

But, Senior Resident Magistrate Yohane Munthali, quashed the mitigating factors, and concurred with the state.

Munthali also said that the offence committed is serious in nature and that the victim has been subjected to trauma considering her tender age.

He continued to say that cases of such nature are very rampant in the district which poses a threat to the girl child education and their future if not well taken care of.

He then went on to slap the accused with 18 (eighteen) years imprisonment with hard labour to serve as a lesson and deterrent to other irresponsible men like the accused.

Salimoni Chitedze hails from Mzangaya Village, Traditional Authority Njolomole in Ntcheu.

From January to October this year, Ntcheu registered a total of 57 (fifty-seven) defilement cases, a development which is very worrisome.

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