A 5-year-old Glendale boy alleged to have been undergoing serious abuse at the hands of her aunt has been taken to a safe house.
Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the case is under investigation and the child has been taken to a safe place.
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Asst Comm Nyathi however said preliminary investigations had shown that the video circulating on social media platforms had no relation to the Glendale incident. He said:
That video has been circulating on social media for some time and we continue to appeal to members of the public to supply us with information where that woman on the video can be found.
However, the child has been taken to a safe place awaiting medical examination reports and interviewing the accused person’s neighbours.
Shakeman’s aunt, Maria Mugwali (40), dismissed the video circulating together with the whistle blower’s alleged abuse message saying she was not the one and the child had not suffered the alleged disability.
The mother of three told H-Metro that Shakeman had been under her custody for the past two years following the death of his father.
Mugwali who is an ardent follower of Mugodhi Apostolic Church claimed the whistleblower has a personal vendetta against her. She said:
To start with, I want to believe that you H-Metro saw that I am not the one on the video of a woman beating the child.
The person who circulated the message has a personal vendetta with me and the house owner.
Information on names and location are true but as a church member at Mugodhi Apostolic church, I would not abuse my late brother’s child.
Social welfare officials and police came and discovered that the person on video was not me.
They took the child to Social Welfare and the case is now being handled by police.
Mugwali said Shakeman is a notorious boy who cannot go unpunished for his errant behaviour. She added:
Shakeman is too notorious that at one time he threw his faeces at our neighbour’s house.
I could not let him go unpunished but disciplined him accordingly and not in anger.
His mother had this only child with my late brother and I do not know where she is living since they had married while she had her own three other children.
Mugwali’s neighbours and church members described her as abusive and heartless.