Ntcheu first grade magistrate court has sentenced 39 year old Chikumbutso Mponda to 12 years imprisonment with hard labour (IHL) for defiling his 13 year old step daughter, (name withheld).
The court through State prosecutor Francis Malenga heard that the accused who is stepfather to the victim has been defiling her since 2014 when she was only nine years old.
“It all started when the mother of the victim was admitted to Balaka District Hospital in 2014 while the victim was just nine years. The father took advantage of that and started defiling the victim whom he threatened not to reveal to anyone saying he would kill her,” Malenga told the jam packed court.
He also told the court that on November 10, 2017, the victim’s mother left home to attend Village Support Group meeting within her village, where she was told that the meeting had been postponed to a later date.
“Knowing that the wife had gone out, the accused took advantage of the situation to defile the girl again inside their house. After returning from the failed meeting, the wife found the door closed,” Malenga told the court.
Thinking that no one was home, the victim’s mother is reported to have forced the door open only to find her husband on top of the step daughter.
The accused forced himself out of the house and ran away according to police.
The matter was reported to Police and the accused was arrested and pleaded guilty to the charge.
In his submission, Malenga asked for a stiffer punishment to the offender saying being a step father to the girl, Mponda was supposed to provide enough protection and support to her.
He added that the girl was traumatised greatly considering that she was very young.
In mitigation, Mponda asked for leniency saying that his wife is an orphan and that he takes care of his ailing grandmother.
However, this did not hold any water as the first grade magistrate, Chrispin Sachuluka agreed with the state to say even though the accused was first offender and that he pleaded guilty to the charge, cases of defilement were on the increase.
He therefore slapped the accused with 12 years imprisonment with hard labour to deter other irresponsible stepfathers.
Mponda hails from Gobede 1 village, Traditional Authority Makwangwala in the district.