Zim mother arrested after death of baby


09 May 2008


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A 26-year-old Zimbabwean woman in Beit Bridge was arrested for allegedly killing her newborn baby, before throwing it into sewage pipe in Dulibadzimu suburb in the border town.

The Zimbabwean deputy police officer commanding Beit Bridge District, Supt Muzamo Bhebhe, said the suspect allegedly committed the offence last Wednesday, 23 April, after delivering a baby girl in a bucket at the house. She was arrested on April 26. "The suspect suffocated the child by stashing cotton wool in its mouth and nose and, after committing the offence, she threw the body into sewer near a local Vhembe secondary school," he said.

Bhebhe said the issue came to light when her sister saw her bleeding and, upon quizzing her, she revealed that she had killed the baby. "The suspect then led the sister to where she had thrown the toddler and a report was then made to police, leading to her arrest. We are now investigating the incident, so that we can establish the exact circumstances surrounding this issue," he said. The infant’s body has since been conveyed to the Beit Bridge District Hospital mortuary for post-mortem. She would soon appear in court facing infanticide charges.

Of late there has been an increase in the cases of baby dumping in Musina and Beit Bridge border towns. The incident comes barely a few months after another woman from the same suburb was arrested by police for dumping her day-old twins, while another newborn baby was also found dumped at a bushy area near Matswale suburb in Musina.

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Mashudu Netsianda

Mashudu Netsianda is our correspondent in Beit Bridge, Zimbabwe. He joined us in 2006, writing both local and international stories. He had worked for several Zimbabwean publications, as well as the Times of Swaziland. Mashudu received his training at the School of Mass Communication in Harare.

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