An 11 year-old girl of Chipata’s Jesati compound in Eastern Province is nursing serious wounds after her step-mother axed and burnt her with a brazier, police have said.

Narrating the ordeal to News Diggers! in an interview yesterday, grandmother to the victim Martha Banda aged 48, explained that the reasons advanced by the step mother were that the girl forgot to remove baby clothes which were put on the line to dry.

Banda further explained that her grandchildren had moved in with their step-mother after their father divorced their biological mother.

“I received a phone call on Thursday night where I was notified that my grand daughter had been burnt and axed. It hurt me so much that I had to go and see for myself what had happened. Indeed, I found a very chaotic situation there. It so happened that her step mother had washed some dresses for her baby girl and left them to dry on the line. So it started raining, but unfortunately my grand daughter forgot that her step-mother had gone out and left the clothes on the line. So when she went back home and found the clothes soaked, that’s how she got upset at her step-daughter,” a tearful Banda narrated.

“She started questioning her why she never removed the clothes from the line. That’s how she ended up ‘pouring blazing charcoal from the brazier on her and axing her in the shoulders, just to inflict more pain on her.”

She demanded for justice in the case, saying the action of the step mother were evil.

“All I am asking from the government is action, let the police take action because there is no woman these days who is kind enough to raise a child of another person, all they know is to snatch other people’s husbands without even taking proper care for children they find,” lamented Banda.

And confirming the development, Eastern Province police Commissioner Luckson Sakala, identified the suspect as Mary Mwanza aged between 25 and 26 years.

Commissioner Sakala said Mwanza had been charged with assault on a child in accordance with the penal code and that she was currently in police custody waiting to appear in court.

“We received a report of assault on a child on 1st of March, 2018 at Chipata police. The reporter was Martha Banda, the condition of the assaulted child is very bad because she is unable to see. But she has been discharged from the hospital, she was actually burnt on the buttocks and thighs after her step mother poured a hot brazier of fire on her body,” explained Commissioner Sakala.

“We have charged the step mother Mary Mwanza with subject offence of assault on a child, contrary to section 248 of the penal code. She will appear in Court today and is still in police custody.”