A Chitungwiza woman who was arraigned before the courts by her ex-husband over allegations that she deliberately infected him with HIV was on Monday acquitted of the charges. The magistrate said the man should have used a condom, not 'nyoro' (unprotected sex).

The court heard that Nyasha Tomu (27), met Mellisa Mudavaviri (21) in January this year.

In the same month, Mudavaviri eloped. Tomu told the court that he went for HIV tests last year in September and after meeting Mudavaviri, they engaged in sexual intercourse using protection. As time went on, Tomu stopped using protection, treating Mudavaviri as his wife. In March this year, Tomu had a sexually transmitted infection.

Mudavaviri rubbed him with some herbs but he never healed. When he went to hospital seeking treatment, Tomu tested positive for HIV.

During trial, he accused Mudavaviri of infecting him since she refused to go for tests. Mudavaviri denied deliberately infecting Tomu before Chitungwiza regional magistrate Mr Clever Tsikwa.

In acquitting her, Mr Tsikwa said the fact that Mudavaviri refused to go for tests could not be taken as proof of knowledge that she was positive. Magistrate Tsikwa said that Tomu placed himself at risk of infection by having unprotected sex. He said the complainant must have used a condom if he wanted to play it safe.

"The fact that she refused to go for tests cannot be taken as proof of knowledge on her part. For one to go for HIV tests, it calls for courage and there must be sufficient pre-test counselling. Mudavaviri had not received such counselling," he said. This led to Mudavaviri's acquittal at the close of the State case.

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