Shamwari yeMwanasikana, a Non- Governmental Organization that advocates for the empowerment and emancipation of the girl child in Zimbabwe has challenged the death of a 14 year old in the hands of an apostolic sect member after denying her hospital assistance.
In a press statement Shamwari yeMwanasikana indicated the 14 year old girl died during labour in the hands of a madzibaba infringing section 76 of the constitution which advocates for the right to health access.
It is infuriating that the young girl met her untimely death in the hands of a religious leader, a death that could have been avoided had she gotten medical treatment in time.In practicing her religious beliefs, she was denied her constitutional right to accessing health services. The perpetrators in these barbaric acts have been going unpunishment for a very long time. The law enforcement agents have been failing in their duty to serve and protect.
“There is false sense of security that these madzibaba’s possess that gives them the power to disregard the law and act anyhow. However, law is law and should not be selective regardless of the perpetrator’s position in society. The perpetrator and the accomplices who had a hand in the acts that led to her death should be arrested and the deceased should get the justice that she deserves,” said Shamwari Yemwanasikana.
Shwamwari yeMwanasikana is advocating for the arrest of the person who impregnated the girl, the guardians who did not report the case of abuse to the police and the madzibaba.
“Our law criminalizes sexual intercourse with a young person who is below the age of consent, of 16years. Churches are supposed to be safe havens for children however, we have madzibaba who violated her right to health care which resulted in her dying, thus, should be held accountable. Communities should take a stand- point in ensuring that our communities are safe and we are not complacent in responding to issues of child abuse.
“Therefore, we demand justice for the deceased who untimely died in the hands of a trusted man of cloth. It is time that the government together with the civil society works together in putting an end to these inhumane crimes against the girl child being orchestrated by the men of cloth,” reads the statement.