Family attempts to hide rape of niece by uncle

....their efforts fail as police receive tip off

Attempts by a family in Njube suburb to hide a rape case of a 17-year-old teenager by her uncle failed after police in Bulawayo received a tipoff about the incident which occurred three years back.

The uncle, whose name is withheld to safeguard the victim’s identity, is 39 years old and has since been arrested.

Bulawayo Provincial Police Spokesperson, Inspector Abednico Ncube, confirmed the incident and said the uncle was charged with rape.

He said the two lived in the same home with the complainant’s grandmother and mother to the accused person, with the grandmother trying to keep the matter private.

“On March 4, 2023, police received a tipoff to the effect that the complainant was sexually abused by the accused person. Efforts to locate the complainant were fruitless as the complainant’s grandmother kept hiding her in bid to defeat the course of justice,” said Inspector Ncube.

Inspector Ncube said on March 23, 2023, police eventually located the complainant and interviewed her about what transpired.

“She revealed that sometime in early 2019, the accused person asked her to collect his shoes from the bedroom. The complainant went to the bedroom and when she could not find the shoes, told the accused person so. The accused person then followed her to the bedroom, where he grabbed the complainant by her hands, forced her to lie on the bed and stuffed a pair of old socks into her mouth,” said Inspector Ncube.

According to the police spokesperson, the accused went on to remove the complainant’s underwear and raped her once without protection.

“The accused person then threatened to beat the complainant if ever she told anyone,” he said.

Inspector Ncube advised the public to report such cases as soon as possible, as this will allow victims to receive the required assistance in preventing unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.

“We also urge members of the public not to conceal rape cases, any attempt  to handle rape as families is tantamount to defeating course of justice,” he said.

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