The Mansa High Court has convicted and sentenced a 21-year-old woman of Nchelenge district to three years’ simple imprisonment, suspended for two years, for aborting her seven-month pregnancy.
This in a case in which Mary Manda was charged with child destruction contrary section 221(1) of the penal code.
According to evidence from Chungu Chama, a nurse at Chiengi health centre, on August 31, 2019, Manda was brought by her mother to this hospital after she complained of a running stomach.
She said when delivering her, she found some drugs inserted in her vagina.
Ms Chama said when asked why the tablets were inserted, Manda kept quiet.
She said after delivery, Manda’s mother then instructed her to call police to question her daughter on what happened.
“I showed the tablets to the patient and I asked her what the drugs were doing there, but she did not answer, when I asked her again she just kept quiet a few minutes later the baby came out already dead, then we removed the placenta and we continued managing the patient because she was bleeding,” she narrated.
And when the matter came up for judgement on Friday last week, Judge Derrick Mulenga reprimanded Manda for committing such an offence, he described the act as an abomination.
“I have taken into account the cries of her mother, when she appeared before this court, she showed to me that she is a woman of velour who does not tolerate illegalities despite the fact that the convict is her only child, she was ready to surrender her to the police.
That’s what it should be, the conduct of the convict is quiet bad. An abortion is a painful thing a child goes through,” judge Mulenga said.
He sentenced her to three years, suspended for two years.
“You are luck you have come at a time when there is COVID-19 but what will happen is that when you commit another offence you will be punished.
I will give you 36 months’ simple imprisonment but I will suspend for 24 months, on condition that you do not commit a similar offence in 12 months, you will be moving in your village but know that you are a prisoner,” he said.