A 32-year-old man accused of committing incest with his 22-year-old biological sister, has told the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court that he didn’t know that she was his sibling, adding that the two had lived as a couple for eight years.

This was after the court found the two with a case to answer and immediately put them on their defence.

Meanwhile, the duo’s 57-year-old mother narrated to the court how she came to learn of her children’s incestuous acts which resulted in two offspring.

In this matter, Alivad Mumba, a 32-year-old painter is charged with incest.

Particulars of the offence allege that between 2014 and October 6, 2018, in Lusaka, Mumba had carnal knowledge of Miriam Hara knowing she was his sister.

And in count two, Miriam Hara, 22, is charged with offences against morality.

Particulars of the offence allege that between the same dates, Hara had carnal knowledge of Alivad Mumba whom to her knowledge is her brother.

The duo had pleaded not guilty to the charges.

And when the matter came up for continued trial before magistrate Faides Hamaundu, Tuesday, Enala Mwanza a farmer of Petauke, told the court that she had eight children among them, Mumba and Hara.

She added that the two had different fathers.

Mwanza said Mumba left the village in 1997 to live with his auntie whereas Hara left in 2012 to stay with her uncle.

She said ever since her children left, she only saw them when she was informed that they were apprehended by the police and charged with incest.

“Alivad left the village in 1997. My young sister came to pick him and he went to live at a farm. Miriam left the village in 2012. I met them when I was called to the police that they were arrested. I was told that Alivad had children with his sister,” she said.

However in cross examination, Mumba patted his head in confusion while smiling saying he had no question.

And when Hara questioned her mother if she had told her that she had a son named Alivad Mumba, the witness responded in the negative.

The mother of the accused also confirmed that the two had never met.

And after the State closed its case, the court found the accused persons with a case to answer and immediately put them on their defence.

Giving his sworn evidence, Mumba said he did not know that Hara was his sister .

He said he met Hara at a hospital in Chongwe when the two went for treatment as they both had swollen legs.

Mumba said Hara asked for some water and he gave her, adding that at that point they started communicating.

He narrated that when they were both admitted, he informed Hara during their interaction that he had problems with his wife and they were on separation.

Mumba said Hara frequented his place and helped around the house.

He said that was how they started staying together and had children.

Mumba added that they had lived together as a couple for eight years before their family came to know.

“Hara frequented my place, she helped around the house and that is how we started staying together and we had children. We have lived for 8 years before our family knew,” he said.

The matter comes up on May 21 for continuation of defence.