Community gangs up to arrest 36-year-old paedophile

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Residents of Empumalanga suburb in Hwange teamed up and effected a citizens arrest on an alleged married paedophile for having a love affair with a 12­year­ old girl from the same suburb.

Its alleged Phathisani Tshuma (36), a stocks controller at Delta Beverages in Hwange, was in the habit of having affairs with minor girls who he impregnates and dumps. On Sunday he allegedly picked up the 12­year­old girl and drove to his usual hideout in a nearby bush for sex and was apprehended by residents when he returned to drop off the girl. Police spokesperson for Matabeleland North province Sergeant Namatirai Mashona could not readily comment on the matter yesterday. Sources close to the matter said Tshuma was in police custody while the little girl, who is doing Grade Seven at a school in Empumalanga, was referred for medical examination at St Patricks Hospital. A police source said Tshuma will appear in court today charged with having sex with a minor.

Residents who spoke to The Chronicle on condition of anonymity said Tshuma was wellknown for sleeping with minors. “He is known for chasing after school girls who he usually takes to the bush where he has sex with them before pampering them with goodies. On Sunday he took a 12­year­old girl from a primary school in Empumalanga to a nearby bush.

The two have been lovers for quite some time. People couldn’t tell the girl’s mother for fear of traumatising her after a similar incident happened two years ago when a certain woman died of heart attack after she learnt that her minor daughter was in love with the same man,” said a source. Residents allegedly mobilised each other after Tshuma was spotted picking the girl and confronted him when he came back to drop her off. They effected a citizens arrest and took him to Hwange Police Station. “The girl was quizzed by residents but she denied having an affair with the man. She only admitted it after her friend from school told neighbours that the two were in love.

The friend said Tshuma would occasionally pick her and they would drive into the bush,” said the source. The girl’s father reportedly lives in South Africa. It is alleged that some parents have accepted bribes from him to conceal his affairs after catching him with their minor daughters. “This man has been a menace in our community as he targets young girls even in primary school. Some parents have confronted him for chasing after their minor daughters while some have foolishly accepted bribes from him,” added the source

He has an underage wife whom he impregnated when she was still in school. He impregnated a Form 2 girl and left her before impregnating a Form 1 girl who he also dumped and now he has an affair with a Grade 7 girl.” Neighbours yesterday accompanied the girl to the hospital for a medical examination and The Chronicle was informed that results confirmed she was sexually active.

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