A 25 year old woman from Serenje has been sentenced to five years imprisonment for assaulting her eight-year-old daughter.
Mirriam Musonda of Zambia township wailed uncontrollably outside the Serenje Magistrate’s Court after she was convicted.Musonda is on February 21, this year, alleged to have burnt her daughter’s hand on a brazier thereby occasioning bodily harm.
Before delivering judgment, magistrate Fidelis Ngosa described Musonda as a ‘heartless’ mother.
The juvenile testified that on February 20, this year, she asked her mother for money as she wanted to procure school books but that the latter refused.
The girl told the court that this prompted her to enter her mother’s bedroom and got a K5.00 to buy books.The juvenile further told the court that when her mother discovered about the missing money, she confronted the victim, who admitted to the offence.
The girl told the court that Musonda got incensed and burnt her right hand on a brazier.
“I shouted for help and I run to my aunt’s [late father’s sister’s] house, and my aunt and uncle then confronted my mother,” she said.But Musonda pleaded not guilty to the offence.
Musonda told the court that her daughter fell on the brazier as she tried to escape to her aunt’s house.
A medical report from Serenje district hospital certified that the juvenile sustained 20 percent burns on her right hand.In her mitigation, Musonda said she has a baby adding that she looks after orphans.
“I have a baby and prison conditions are not good for a child. I ‘m sorry for committing this offence,” Musonda said.However Magistrate Ngosa, told Musonda that her actions are inhuman.
“It is unthinkable that a mother can burn the hands of her daughter over a missing K5.00,” Mr Ngosa said.
Mr Ngosa said the court has a responsibility to protect children.