MARONDERA: A married woman from Mahusekwa in Mashonaland East province has been sentenced to six months in prison after she killed her newly born baby in order to conceal an illicit love affair she was involved in while her husband was away.
Melody Munofa, 30, will, however, spend three months in prison after three months were set aside on condition that she will not commit a similar offence in the next five years.
Munofa of Bhidhi village under Chief Samuriwo was left alone by her husband more than a year ago. The man is currently based in South Africa where he is working.
State prosecutor, Shingirai Nyengera told magistrate Josephine Sande that sometime last year, Munofa had a sexual relationship with an unnamed villager, which resulted in her falling pregnant.
On 15 November last year, Munofa felt labour pains while on her way to the shops and gave birth to a baby girl.
A passer-by, Masiiwa Masawi, from the same village, assisted to deliver the baby.
After the delivery, Masawi suggested to Munofa that they should proceed to the clinic for medical attention.
However, Munofa declined, saying she was tired and would take the baby to the clinic the next day.
Munofa went home and strangled the baby before throwing it into a pit latrine.
After this incident, Munofa’s mother-in-law, Tsitsi Chingwanda, became suspicious and questioned her on what had happened to her bulging tummy, which had suddenly disappeared, but Munofa denied ever being pregnant.
However, Munofa was later exposed when Masawi, the woman who had assisted her to give birth, enquired about the health of the baby.
The mother-in-law immediately reported the matter to the police.
In her defence, Munofa said she had a miscarriage but magistrate Sande found her guilty and noted that Munofa had lied to the court.
Sande said infanticide was a heinous crime that attracts a custodial sentence.