Harare woman in soup for claiming child’s maintenance from two men

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By Mary Taruvinga

A 31-year-old Harare woman has been dragged to court facing fraud charges for demanding and receiving maintenance from two men she claimed to have fathered her child.

Rudo Muteti was Thursday hauled before Harare magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa to answer to the charges.

She was remanded out of custody to December 20 on $100 bail.

It is state’s case that Muteti has been collecting the money since August.

Through her deceit, she was taken to court by Kudzanai Mudonha, who was paying maintenance until the time he discovered he was not the 5-year-old’s biological father.

According to the state, in January 2012, Mudona fell in love with Muteti.

In August the same year, Muteti told Mudonha that she was pregnant with Mudonha accepting responsibility since he had no knowledge that his lover had another man.

Court heard that in May 2013, Muteti gave birth to a baby boy whom she named after Mudonha.

The two went on to acquire a birth certificate for the child with Mudonha presented as the father of the child.

In August 2013, Muteti took Mudonha to court to compel him to pay maintenance for the upkeep of the child under case number M3157/13.

Consequently, Mudonha was ordered to pay $120 per month as maintenance for the child.

From that month, Mudonha has been paying the money to date.

Meanwhile, Muteti was also receiving money from the real father, Moses Lyanga Bukenyi, a Congolese, who has been staying in Zimbabwe since 1998 and had relocated to Canada in 2012 where he is currently residing.

The offence came to light when Bukenyi called Mudonha advising him that he was the biological father of the child he had been maintaining for the past five years.

He also told him that he had been financially providing for the child since birth.

Bukenyi also told Mudonha that he had DNA tests in April this year to prove that he was the biological father of the child, adding that Muteti was aware of that.

It is the State’s case that Mudonha suffered a prejudice of $11 365 through maintenance, medical aid and paying of school fees in respect of the child.

Shepherd Makonde prosecuted.