A 16-YEAR-OLD Beitbridge girl stunned the court this week after revealing that her father reportedly raped her several times for ritual purposes.
The girl (name withheld for ethical reasons) also said her stepmother was aware of the rape and that her father confessed during a family meeting and vowed to stop raping her, only to resume soon after.
According to the complainant, her father committed the sexual assaults when she remained behind watching television or studying for her grade seven examinations.
The sexual abuse allegedly started when she was 13.
Appearing before Regional Magistrate Innocent Bepura, the girl’s father, however, pleaded not guilty saying he is a Christian who valued and loved his family and would never sexually abuse her daughter.
He said his daughter was turning against him after he warned her against having sexual relations with a certain teenager in the border town.
During the trial, the complainant told the court that her father at one point raped her in her bedroom while her sister was away.
She said at one time when she failed to convince her sister of the bizarre act they swapped sleeping places and when the father stole into the room he touched her sister mistaking for her, but promptly left after realising his mistake.
“The only other person who had sex with me was dad. He is lying that he did not if he is saying so. I told my sister and she did not believe me so we changed places where we slept. That night dad stole into the room and touched her thinking it was me,” she said..
“I slept with my boyfriend once in August last year and we had agreed. The only other person I slept with was dad who started having sex with me when I was 13. When confronted by mom (stepmother) he said it was a ritual so that he would have money. He slept with me countless times.”
The minor girl’s father (who cannot be identified to protect the identity of the complainant) is a well-known Beitbridge resident.
The accused was arrested in December last year together with his wife who is already serving a four year jail term after pleading guilty of her administration of pharmaceuticals used for termination of the girl’s resultant pregnancy following the rape.
The accused’s lawyer Muchineripi Nhire, who accused the magistrate of using delaying tactics in the last court session, made a successful application against the submission of the warned and cautioned statement as an exhibit saying confirmation of the same was not procedural.
Bepura returned the statement to prosecutor Tsitsi Mutukwa who said she would respond to the application later in a “trial within a trial” but would at the moment lead her witnesses.
The trial continues on January 11 when the state is expected to hear from a third witness.