Secondary School Teacher Nabbed For Rape
Police in Mzimba is keeping in custody 38-year-old Godrick Nkhoma a teacher at Kapando community day secondary school for allegedly raping his 20-year-old student on 11 November this year.
The arrest of Nkhoma on Thursday was effected following the intervention of two stakeholders - Mzimba Radio Trust and Malawi Council for the Handicapped MACOHA who logistically supported the police at Kambavi police unit in tracking down the suspect.
Mzimba police deputy spokesperson Alfred Lucio has confirmed the development saying Nkhoma who hails from Kaigangire village in the area of Inkosi Chindi in Mzimba will appear before court soon to answer a charge of rape.
Mzimba radio trust program manager Christopher Melele told Zodiak Online that the arrest of Nkhoma started with an anonymous call around 9 PM on Wednesday alleging a teacher (Nkhoma) had raped his 20-year-old student at Kapando CDSS but was not being picked up by police in the area.
"Following the anonymous call we - Mzimba Radio Trust - together with MACOHA jointly conducted undercover investigations to track the whereabouts of the said teacher and after getting a tip on where he was we went to request for back up and security detail from Kambavi police unit to follow him," said Melele.
Melele said together with the victim and her mother they went to Kapando CDSS where it was said that the suspect had gone into hiding.
"So after we ganged up with learners at the school in search of the suspect we got hold of him and the police handcuffed him," Said Melele.
However, Melele said they got reports that James Kokonongwa a health worker at Euthini health center had connived with the suspect's relative to produce a fake medical report which would not show that penetration took place.
"But after pressing him for some time as to why he had prescribed drugs for prevention of pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases to the victim he admitted that he was pressured into altering the report," said Melele.
According to Melele , Kokonongwa later produced another medical report for the girl.
Meanwhile both MACOHA and Mzimba Radio Trust - organizations implementing the spotlight initiative - a project striving to end gender-based violence among women and children being funded by UNDP - have bemoaned the state of police cells at Kambavi police in Mzimba which are in a dilapidated form and there have been reports of rape and defilement suspects bolting the cells at will.
"This is a minus to the fight against GBV hence we call upon the police to look into the issue of the cell at Kambavi police unit which we can say currently is not secured to keep suspects", Said Melele.
Mzimba south social welfare officer Bernard Nangwale has commended the intervention taken by the two organizations who are implementing a spotlight initiative project saying it's a step in the right direction in curbing cases of GBV among women and children.
The arrest of Godrick Nkhoma comes high on the heels of calls from various organizations including the association of women in media to the judiciary to give stiffer penalties to convicts in rape and defilement cases to deter others from committing such offenses.