LUSAKA Principal Resident Magistrate Mwaka Mikalile has fined a 24-year-old woman and her lover K5,000 each for concealing the death of the woman’s baby, failure to which they will be jailed six months’ simple imprisonment.
In this matter, Praxides Sikamena, a hairdresser and Davison Simunji, 32, a machine operator both of Lilayi Estates were charged with concealing the death of a child, to which they pleaded guilty.
Particulars of the offence were that on July 27, 2020, Sikamena and Simunji jointly and whilst acting together, concealed the death of a child, Rejoice Sikamena.
Facts in the matter were that on June 24, this year, Sikamena gave birth to a baby girl.
On July 27, around 05:00 hours, while she was sleeping with her lover Simunji and the baby on the same bed, it was discovered that the baby had died.
Upon informing her lover of the child’s death, Simunji advised her not to tell the death to anyone and proposed that they dispose of the body secretly.
The two then left their residential area in Gondwe Compound and dumped the infant in the bushes of Miller Farms in Lilayi area.
At the time the child was born, Sikamena was no longer with the baby’s father, Lawrence Mulonga, who she had lived with for 14 days after the child was born before they went separate ways.
And when Sikamena went to collect her belongings, including that of her child at her former house, some neighbours questioned the whereabouts of the baby.
At this point, Sikamena got jittery and ran away, but was apprehended by members of the public, who took her to the police.
Magistrate Mikalile had in the last session convicted Sikamena and Simunji of the charge.
In mitigation, the convicts asked for mercy and forgiveness.
Sikamena said she did not know that what they did was wrong, whereas Simunji said it was the first time to be found in such a situation and that he did not know what to do.
And when the matter came up for sentencing, Monday, Magistrate Mikalile said she took into consideration the convicts’ mitigation and the fact that the two had pleaded guilty.
She, however, said the two could not claim not to have known what they were doing because ignorance of the law was no defence.
Magistrate Mikalile said the death of a human being was a significant issue and that it was inconceivable that the convicts hid such an activity.
“It is unimaginable that you decided to throw away the body of the deceased. Every dead person deserves a decent burial. What you two did was wrong and barbaric,” said Magistrate Mikalile.
She, therefore, fined them K5,000 each, failure to which they will be sent to jail for six months’ simple imprisonment.