JOSHUA Mativenga of Zhombe was close to tears when he was told that Dony Jub Ane (50), who beat his 12-year-old child to death, would only be charged with assault instead of murder.
Mativenga said he had lost faith in the justice delivery system following the decision by the prosecutor-general’s office to downgrade the charge, which was initially murder, to simple assault.
“It is shocking that such a decision has been arrived at by an office which is constitutionally mandated to prosecute criminals and make us believe in the delivery of justice in this country,” he said.
According to State papers, on March 2 2013, the now-deceased Kudakwashe Mativenga was herding cattle in the company of Keresiya Chisango when his beasts strayed strayed into Ane’s fields.
The State alleges that Ane called Kudakwashe and savagely assaulted him with fists and stamped on the hapless child with booted feet until he lost consciousness.
“The accused called Kudakwashe, whom he assaulted several times on the head with his hands and kicked him on the ribs with booted feet,” reads part of the State papers.
Kudakwashe is said to have died later that day due to the injuries he sustained and was taken to United Bulawayo Hospitals for a post mortem on March 4.
Post mortem results showed that Kudakwashe died due to asphyxia (lack of air in the lungs), aspiration and severe anaemia.
A Bulawayo pathologist, who conducted the post mortem, a Dr Pesanai, indicated that he failed to examine the head of the deceased because the hospital did not have instruments to open the skull.
Ane was initially charged with murder, but the charge was later altered to that of assault, with the trial kicking off at the Kwekwe Magistrates’ Court before Letwin Rwodzi.
Pesanai will be called as a witness when the assault trial continues on March 24, with prosecutor Vimbai Chinoda pushing to establish the circumstances which saw the doctor concluding that Kudakwashe had not died because of the assault.
Joshua said he was battling to come to terms with the charge, but he placed all his faith in the hands of God.