A teenage housemaid, Loctina Harumbwi, based in Hatfield, Harare, was brought to court on Saturday on an infanticide charge after she allegedly drowned her newly-born baby in a bucket of water. She was remanded in custody to today for the bail application, after she appeared before Harare magistrate Bianca Makwande.
The State alleges that on October 26, Harumbwi spent the whole day complaining of having a running tummy, but refused to be taken to hospital. Her employer, Hazel Mangwende, returned home around 5pm and allegedly found her asleep and looking dizzy.
Harumbwi allegedly later secretly gave birth to a baby boy at around midnight and drowned the infant in a 20-litre bucket full of water. Mangwende allegedly woke up at around 1am after hearing some noise coming from Harumbwi’s room, but the latter said all was well.
The State alleges Mangwende heard Harumbwi opening the door and later closed it. Mangwende became suspicious and forced her way into the suspect’s room and found her in a pool of blood, while holding a blood-stained towel, but the maid insisted nothing was amiss.
Mangwende then drove her to Hatfield Police Station, where Harumbwi confessed that she had killed her newly-born baby.