The Dowa First Grade Magistrate’s Court on Thursday convicted and sentenced a 22-year-old Congolese national to 10 years imprisonment with hard labour for defiling a 14-year-old Burundian girl.
The court through state prosecutor Sub Inspector Ezara Bakili heard that the convict Toussaint Kibukira between May and October 2020 at Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa District defiled the victim.
Bakili further told the court that in the month of May 2020, the convict proposed the victim to be in a love relationship. The victim accepted his proposal due to the promises made by the convict and the two started dating.
The convict and the victim have been meeting and having sexual intercourse at Lisungwi Location at the convict’s friend’s house.
However, the convict’s friend relocated to another location within Dzaleka Refugee Camp and following the relocation, the convict decided to be meeting the victim along the streets in the camp.
He narrated that considering the fact that the streets were not safe for them, the convict had been taking the victim to lodges in Lumbadzi where they have been having sexual intercourse.
It was also revealed in court that as the relationship of the two was going on, the victim’s father noticed strange behaviour in her daughter and started following her until on October 7, 2020 when his son received a phone call from a certain man informing him that her sister was seen with the convict along the streets kissing.
This did not please the victim’s father and went to the scene and found the two.
Upon interrogation, the victim explained the whole issue to her father and confirmed to be having sexual intercourse with the convict for several times.
The matter was reported to police and the victim was referred to Dzaleka Health Centre where medical examination confirmed that the victim was indeed defiled.
Appearing before court, the convict pleaded not guilty to a charge of defilement. This prompted the state to parade four witnesses, who testified against him, leading to his conviction after pleading guilty to a charge of defilement contrary to Section 138 of the Penal Code.
In his submission, state prosecutor Sub Inspector Bakili, said the offence committed is serious in nature hence the need for the court to pass a stiff punishment to the offender as a deterrent to other would-be offenders.
Passing sentence, First Grade Magistrate Amran Phiri concurred with the state’s submission for a stiff punishment and sentenced the convict to 10 years imprisonment with hard labour as a warning to others with similar intentions.
The convict, Toussaint Kibukira, comes from North Kivu Province in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).