27 December 2013

Zimbabwe: 14 Year-Old Spared Jail Over Abortion

A 14 year-old Masvingo school girl was last week spared jail after being convicted for illegally terminating a three months old pregnancy.

Masvingo magistrate, Dorothy Mwanyisa, sentenced the girl to 18 months in prison but suspended six months on condition she does not commit a similar crime over the next five years.

The court also commuted the remaining 12 months to 420 hours of community service at a local school.

Prosecutor Makaita Chikamhi said the girl, a Form Two student at a local school, was in a relationship with a 16 year-old boy when she became pregnant in September this year.

The court heard that the boyfriend, also from the same school, refused to accept responsibility and ordered the girl to terminate the pregnancy before it was discovered by her parents.

According to the prosecutor, the boy - who is still at large - then gave the girl a concoction to induce the abortion.

After drinking the liquid, the girl went home where she started bleeding heavily from her privates and also became seriously ill.

Concerned about her deteriorating health, the girl's mother took her to a local clinic where she explained what had happened.

The clinic referred her to Masvingo General Hospital where she was treated and handed over to the police.

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