Zimbabwe: Man Fined For Opening Own Graveyard

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A man from Bulawayo has been fined $200 for burying the body of his day-old niece in a bush in Old Pumula suburb without a burial order or the baby’s mother’s consent.

Jacob Gatsi, 26, buried the infant’s body with an unidentified accomplice who is still at large.

Gatsi yesterday pleaded not guilty before Western Commonage magistrate Themba Chimiso.

“For your crime you’re going to pay a fine of $200. And failure to pay is going to attract 60 days imprisonment,” said Chimiso.
Rebecca Samupindi, the baby’s mother, gave birth to the baby girl at home early last month. The court heard that the infant died a day after birth.

“I heard the baby sneezing as we were sleeping. When she sneezed for the third time she just went silent. We checked and realised she was dead,” said Clara Mashinda, the infant’s grandmother. Mashinda and Samupindi then took the body to the home of the late infant’s father, Robert Gatsi.

“I called my daughter’s boyfriend,  Robert Gatsi and informed him of what had transpired and he instructed us to meet him at his grandmother’s house in Njube. I carried the dead baby and with my daughter we proceeded to Njube and got there at around 4.30AM,” said Mashinda.

“We met up with Robert Gatsi, his brother Jacob, his mother Irene Mwanga and the grandmother. We presented to them their dead grand daughter and we left the dead child there. After going home I never heard anything from the Gatsi family, neither did they call to inform us about the burial.”


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