A man from Mzilikazi suburb, Bulawayo, appeared before the courts and was fined $5 000 for assaulting his wife for not singing at a funeral.
The 39-year-old Lucas Mhlanga (39) who is a barber, pleaded guilty to assault charges when he appeared before Bulawayo Magistrate Mrs Nomagugu Maphosa on Monday.
Prosecutor Mr Owen Mugari said Mhlanga and his wife Ms Sikhulekile Moyo (40) were coming from a funeral in the same suburb on Sunday evening when he asked her why she was not singing at the funeral.
Mhlanga then assaulted his wife as punishment for not singing. She did not sustain any injuries.
Ms Moyo then reported the matter to the police resulting in Mhlanga’s arrest.
When Mhlanga appeared before the court, Ms Moyo brought an affidavit to court intending to withdraw the matter saying she had forgiven him as Mhlanga had promised not to assault her again. She said:
I have forgiven my husband because he promised not to do it again and because he is the father of my only child who is a minor.
Mhlanga pleaded guilty to the charges and promised not to assault his wife again. He said:
I am sorry to my wife and to the Honourable court. I acted under the influence of alcohol and I did not know that punishing my wife is an offence. Now that I know, I shall never do it again.
The magistrate, Mrs Maphosa, considered that the complainant had rendered an affidavit intending to withdraw the case and that she was the accused person’s wife and the couple has a child who is a minor.
The magistrate said sending Mhlanga to jail would disturb the child whose upkeep is based on the accused person’s earnings as he was the breadwinner.
Mrs Maphosa ordered Mhlanga to pay $5 000 by May 30 or spend 60 days in prison.