BY KENNETH NYANGANI
A POPULAR Mutare socialite, who was this week acquitted of raping his seven-year-old daughter, has blasted parents who use their children to fight their matrimonial disputes, claiming he does not have hard feelings against his former wife.
Rusape regional magistrate Livingstone Chipadze ruled in the accused’s favour after the State failed to prove a prima facie case against him.
Chipadze told the court that the mother of the complainant had fabricated the rape charges and coaxed her daughter into filing the rape charge after the relationship with the
socialite had broken down.
The socialite said there was evidence that the seven-year-old complainant’s parents were going through serious matrimonial problems.
In an interview with NewsDay Weekender, the popular Mutare man, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the minor, said he was happy that he had been cleared.
“I am happy that I have been acquitted of these rape charges. I want to thank the justice system for setting me free. I was even struggling to work for my family because of this issue.
I am concerned about parents who use their children to fight their matrimonial challenges,” he said.
“This will obviously affect children in the long run. Parents should find a way of solving their differences without involving their children. I don’t have hard feelings with my former wife and I am not going to sue her. I am leaving it to God. Now I want to focus on the best possible way to raise my child.”
The magistrate said the complainant’s mother tried to manipulate her maid through a pay raise so that she falsely testifies in court against the accused.
“The complainant’s mother showed the court that she is clearly a bitter person against the accused and in court did not dispute that her own sister had, at one time, used or raised false allegations of rape against her husband,” the magistrate said
The complainant’s mother was also discredited by the maid as an alcoholic, who had attempted to manipulate her to falsely testify against her former husband.