THE Lusaka High Court has sentenced to life imprisonment a 29-year-old woman of Chilenje for killing her neighbour’s child after she poured hot water on her following a dispute with its mother.
High Court judge Mungeni Mulenga convicted Esther Yamba last month after the prosecution proved its case against her.
Passing sentence yesterday, judge Mulenga said Yamba’s pouring of water on the deceased had nothing to do with provocation she felt when she fought with the mother.
She said the extent of the injury on the child was too serious and therefore sentenced her to life imprisonment.
“I therefore sentence the convict to a sentence other than death by sentencing her to life imprisonment,” said judge Mulenga.
It was alleged that Yamba on June 2, 2015 poured hot water on three-year-old Mirriam Nakamba after the convict had a dispute with the toddler’s mother. The girl died 14 days later.
The child suffered severe burns on the head, buttocks, hands, legs and chest.
Testifying in the case, Lillian Mwila, 20 also of Chilenje, who was the deceased’s mother, narrated that her child was burnt on June 2, and that she died two weeks later at UTH.
She told the court that on the fateful day, she had fought with the accused who told one of her aunties that she used to visit men with her daughter.
Mwila said Yamba’s lies caused her aunt to rebuke her but that she explained that what she was told were lies.
She said she then followed the accused at her house to query her about the lies she had spread.
Later, the two went back to Mwila’s house where a fight ensued after the accused slapped the former on the face.
The court heard that Yamba then went outside and upon her return in the house, the child screamed that she had been burnt by the accused using hot water which her mother had put on a brazier for her bath.
The court further heard that when Mwila and others rushed outside, they found the accused standing with an empty pot.
Mwila told the court that they decided to rush the child to Chilenje clinic where they were referred to UTH, but the child later died.