Woman kills newly-born baby with cooking stick

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CHARANDURA – A 34-year-old woman allegedly struck her newly-born baby with a cooking stick, put
the body in a plastic bag and buried it in a shallow grave in a nearby bush. Unfortunately for her the
whole horrendous incident was witnessed by two minors.
Assistant Inspector Fungai Ngawagare confirmed the gruesome incident which occurred at Village
Munhunga, Headman Rambanepasi Chief Hama, Charandura recently.
Police in Charandura arrested the suspect Susan Manika of Harare on Sunday following a tip-off and
recovered a skirt from the shallow grave.
It is alleged that sometime in April, a pregnant Manika came back to her rural home from Harare.
On the night in question, it is alleged that the suspect got into the kitchen hut where she had
instructed the two minors she was staying with to rekindle the fire. She then chased the two minors
away to their bedroom.
While in the kitchen, Manika gave birth to a baby. When the baby cried, she allegedly struck it with
a cooking stick twice on the head killing it instantly.
The incident happened in the eyes of the two minors who were peeping through an opening on the
door. The suspect then wrapped the baby’s body with a grey skirt and placed it in a plastic bag.
She then placed the body in a mortar which was in the kitchen. After witnessing the incident, the
two minors went back to their bedroom.
When Manika went into the bedroom, she was told by one of the minors that they had witnessed
the incident. She threatened to kill the minors if they revealed the matter to anyone.
The following day and in the evening, the suspect ordered one of the minors to accompany her into
a nearby bush. The suspect then took the baby’s body which she had wrapped in a plastic bag.
She dug a shallow grave and buried the baby’s body.
On December 4, police received an anonymous call about the incident and Manika was arrested.
Police attended the scene and recovered a black skirt from the shallow grave.
Manika is expected to appear in court soon facing infanticide charges.
“The police would like to thank members of the public for supplying such helpful information. The
public is further reminded to respect the sanctity of human life,” said Asst. Insp. Ngawagare.

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