A MASVINGO woman, who was impregnated by another man while her husband was away working in South Africa, attempted to conceal her alleged adultery and save her marriage by burying her three-day-old baby alive.

The baby was found alive, but died five days later in hospital. This was heard when Grace Chikwati (30) of Mushandike village appeared before Masvingo magistrate Langton Ndokora facing a charge of infanticide on Tuesday.

Prosecutor Fidelis Nyamukondiwa said Chikwati gave birth to a healthy and fit baby girl alone at home on May 12. She then attempted to conceal her adultery by burying the baby alive on the banks of Chinjekwe River in the village.

However, Chikwati's cousin and two village elders became suspicious when they could not see the new born baby and quizzed her.

Chikwati reportedly lied that the baby had died soon after delivery and had buried her alone. The court heard that the three pressed her saying they wanted to bury the baby in accordance with tradition and insisted that she takes them to the burial site.

To their horror, they found the baby girl still alive after three days in a shallow grave. They took the baby to Masvingo General Hospital where she died five days later. They reported the matter to the police, leading to Chikwati's arrest.

Chikwati told the court that she had committed the offence to save her marriage as her husband was about to return from South Africa.

She said the man who had impregnated her went into hiding. She was remanded to tomorrow for continuation of trial.

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