The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has reported that a Lupane woman has been arrested in connection in infanticide.
Infanticide is the intentional killing of infants and is now universally illegal. The practice was previously a widespread practice throughout human history that was mainly used to dispose of unwanted children.
Posting via its Twitter handle, ZRP said the 19-year-old woman was arrested following a tip-off. Reads the tweet:
A 19-year-old Lupane woman has been arrested in connection with a case of infanticide where she gave birth to a baby boy on 27/11/20. She dug a pit in the garden and buried the infant.
The offence was discovered on 3/12/20 after the suspect requested for some pads from the informant who got suspicious and reported the case.
Zimbabwe has the Infanticide Act [Chapter 9:12] which criminalises infanticide. It also provides for the punishment of the violators of the regulation.
It states that a woman is charged with the offence of infanticide when it has been proved that, within six months of the birth of her child, she unlawfully and intentionally caused the child’s death.
The woman shall be guilty of the offence of infanticide and liable to a fine not exceeding level 10 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years or to both such fine and such imprisonment.
The Act also observes that where it is proved that she caused the child’s death at a time when the balance of her mind was disturbed as a result of giving birth to the child, she shall not be found guilty of murder but may be found guilty of the offence of infanticide.
Cases of baby murders have been on the rise in Zimbabwe lately with some saying the majority of cases are likely going unreported.