A VICTORIA Falls man shocked the court yesterday when he said he pays maintenance for seven children with three different women, including his current wife.
Collen Tshuma, a driver at Zimbabwe National Road Authority (Zinara) in Hwange, appeared before resident magistrate Sharon Rosemani facing charges of failing to pay maintenance to his ex-wife Lebane Dube (40).
This was after the same court ordered him to pay $50 per month, which had accumulated to $500.
“I pay maintenance to other women, so it is difficult for me sometimes,” Tshuma said.
“I pay $265 for three children to my wife that l stay with.
“I also pay $200 for the other three with my first wife and $50 for one child that l have with the complainant.”
He said he earned $680 per month and has eight children, with the eldest being 23 years old.
“I did not pay maintenance to her because l was trying to pay money which l owed some people who could get me arrested,” he said.
“I told her that l would pay February 15 when I receive money for the housing stand I am selling.”
It is the State’s case that on January 21 2010 at Victoria Falls Magistrates’ Court, Tshuma was ordered to pay maintenance of $50 per month for his minor child until she is able to support herself.
Tshuma failed to pay from April 2014 to January this year and the arrears accumulated to $500.
However, Dube wanted to withdraw the case stating that she did not want Tshuma to be imprisoned, but only wanted him to pay the
money as she owed school fees for her child.
Tshuma was previously taken to court by the complainant for a similar case of failure to pay $1 400 in maintenance money.
“The first time l failed to pay maintenance to the complainant because our salaries were cut so it was difficult for me to pay,” he said. Tshuma was fined $60.
He was sentenced to an additional six weeks, which were wholly suspended on condition he pays the maintenance arrears in full.