By Kelvin Kasiwulaya| The long arm of the law recently caught up with a Gweru man who married a 13 year old girl as second wife.
Stanford Gunda (29) of Section 4 Mtapa high density suburb appeared before Magistrate Phatikhile Msipa for contravening Section 70 of the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act chapter 9;23.
Prosecuting, Kelvin Guvheya told the court that, on the 29th of September 2017 at around 19:00hrs, Stanford Gunda convinced the teenager (name withheld) via Whatsapp to elope with him, the teenager waited for him outside her home gate where Gunda took her to his friend’s house.
The court further heard that, the following morning the two proceeded to Mutare where Gunda’s sister stays and had consensual sexual intercourse several times. Later they returned to Gweru where they stayed as a couple for the whole month. As fate would have it, the juvenile went to inform her aunt about her marriage, consequently the Aunt made a police report leading to the instant incarceration of the accused.
In his defense, Gunda argued that the juvenile and him were in love and they were married, he also alluded to the fact that the juvenile had consented to having sexual intercourse with him. “Your worship the girl and I are deeply in love and we are customarily married, I did not rape her, she consented to have sex with me”, he said.
The Magistrate said though he thought they were deeply in love with the 13 year old; he acted unlawfully by marrying an underage. “What is surprising is that you knew the girl was a grade seven pupil but you proceeded to have sex with her and took her as your second wife without informing any of her relatives,” she said .
Magistrate Msipa slapped with two years imprisonment, six months suspended on condition of good behavior