THERE was drama at the Harare Magistrates’ Court yesterday when a woman, due to testify against a neighbour in the alleged rap_e of her six-year-old daughter, went into a trance.
This happened moments before she took the stand.
The woman (name withheld) went to the toilet, adjacent Court 9, where she was set to testify and came out screaming saying she had encountered a ‘short boy’.
Before she could explain further, she went mute and could no longer speak.
A relative who had accompanied her to court told H-Metro:
“Vasati vaenda ku toilet, vanongedzerwa nemusungwa. Pavadzoka havana kuzomboita zvakanaka uye havachina izwi.”
The woman was taken out of the courtroom and some people prayed for her until her speech returned.
She confessed that she was previously warned by the father of the accused to withdraw the matter and settle it out of court, but she refused.
She claimed that the father of the accused told her that he would not be appearing physically in court, but she was going to face him.
The State couldn’t go ahead with the trial and it was remanded to November 2, with the hope that the woman will be able to speak on that day.
The accused is Elias Handiseni and has already pleaded not guilty to the offence.
Handiseni resides in Hopley where the six-year-old and her mother used to stay.
Allegations are that in May this year, the woman left her daughter in the custody of her friend for a month after she had found a job at Zindoga Shops.
The girl was sent by her mother’s friend to go and buy airtime.
On her way, she met Handiseni, who allegedly dragged her into a nearby house and rap_ed her.
He then warned her about disclosing the matter to anyone.
The child was later taken to her grandmother’s place in Gonzo Village.
The grandmother noticed that the child was frequenting the toilet.
And, when she inquired, the girl revealed that she had been rap_ed by Handiseni in Hopley, leading to his arrest.