Father escapes jail after fatal assault on child

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GWERU — A Silobela man was lucky to walk away with a wholly-suspended jail term after he lost his temper and fatally assaulted his 11-year-old daughter while assisting her with homework.

Onias Moyo (37) of Nkomazabo Village, Silobela, appeared before High Court judge Justice Nicholas Mathonsi sitting on circuit in Gweru last week and was convicted of culpable homicide.

He was sentenced to four years in prison one of which was suspended after consideration of 15 months he had spent in remand prison awaiting trial. The remaining three years were wholly suspended for five years on condition he does not commit a similar offence over that period.

Passing sentence, Justice Mathonsi noted that Moyo did not intend to kill and also considered the incident happened while the accused was trying to improve the academic life of his daughter.

Justice Mathonsi also took into account that Moyo did not waste the court’s time by denying the charge.
On June 18 last year at around 1900hrs, Moyo was assisting his daughter with her homework when she failed to understand what she was being taught, prompting him to beat her all over the body with a stick.
The girl collapsed and died the following day.

A post-mortem conducted at United Bulawayo Hospitals on June 29 of the same year concluded she had succumbed to severe head injuries, intracranial haemorrhage and assault.