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Rise In GBV Cases Worrisome, Says Magistrate

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By James Muonwa, Mashonaland West Correspondent


A CHINHOYI magistrate has raised concern over the prevalence of gender-based violence against women.

Magistrate Tapiwa Banda was passing sentence against two men who were found guilty of abusing their spouses in two separate incidents.

In the first case, Luckmore Zuze (42) of Longmead B farm, Chinhoyi on 6 February this year beat up his wife Gamuchirai Mungwere, aged 30, for refusing to go and weed the couple’s maize field.

Zuze appeared in court facing domestic violence charges.

He pleaded guilty and was slapped with nine months’ imprisonment.

The court, however, commuted the sentence to 315 hours of community service.

In the second matter, Ezekiel Munatswa (38) of Damba village, Mhangura was convicted of domestic violence and ordered to pay $5 000, failure to which he would spend 30 days behind bars.

The State case, led by Review Nikisi, was that on 18 February this year at around midnight, Munatswa returned from a beer drink and headed straight to his estranged wife Fares Charuma (35)’s homestead within the same village.

Upon arrival, Munatswa started persuading Charuma to return to their matrimonial home but she refused as she believed their marriage had irretrievably broken down.

A row erupted with Munatswa choking Charuma and beating her all over her body using fists and booted feet.

Complainant sustained injuries as a result of the bashing.

In passing sentences in both matters, magistrate Banda observed the increase in gender-based violence cases was worrisome, something which demanded the courts to pass deterrent custodial sentences where appropriate, to curb the prevalence of the vice.