Zimbabwe: Late 14-Year-Old Pregnant Girl’s Case Taking Long – Minister

By Thandiwe Garusa
The case of a 14-year-old girl Memory Machaya who died last week in Marange Bocha at a church shrine whilst giving birth is taking long to be investigated, Women Affairs Minister Sithembiso Nyoni has said.

Police last week said they had started investigating the matter.

However, addressing journalists Monday, Nyoni said the case was long overdue and justice must be served.

“We want this to be fast-tracked so that it can be used to bring the perpetrators to justice. We want it to be rested as soon as possible, it is taking too long and is very painful to all mothers let alone to the mother of the child,” she said.

“Memory’s case was rape because I don’t see a 14-year-old giving in to sequel consent and into marriage. “Let it be investigated and let whoever is the perpetrator explain. It’s not acceptable, a 14-year-old is a minor who should be taken care of by the church, who should be taken care of by adults, not to be abused by adults.

“What has happened to our African culture where someone’s child is also your child? Would that man who made Memory pregnant accept his own daughter being made pregnant or married by an old man under such circumstances?”

Nyoni also dismissed reports senior Zanu PF officials, including President Emmerson Mnangagwa of interfering with the matter as the Marange apostolic sect has large numbers of Zanu PF supporters.

“He (Mnangagwa) is the President of a nation and is free to visit anyone that invites him but he is not responsible for our behaviour after he leaves those groups and it is really mischievous to say if a head of state visits a place and then something happens after his visit that he should be blamed and be made to take responsibility.

“I would like to condemn this in no uncertain terms. It is unacceptable, let alone using God’s name to oppress and to abuse people that you should be taking care of. I think it is double mischievous.”

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