A Child Beaten Unconscious, How It Happened
It happened on 22nd of November 2014 when Hosea Ruben went to visit Khalid Athumani who was staying with his daughter Neema Hosea (7). Khalid had requested to stay with Neema so that she may help them with babysitting their newly born baby. Hosea stays in Lalaji, Manyara region the same place where Khalid’s wife comes from. Therefore since May 2014 Neema moved to Lamba, Singida.
One unspecified day Hosea visited Khalid to inform them that he had come for Neema because she had already been enrolled to start primary school in 2015. Against his expectations Hosea did not find his daughter playing outside with other kids around Khalid’s home; upon inquiry he was informed that the daughter is sick for two weeks.
Hosea further asked for her daughter to be brought to meet him. Alas! The daughter came out weakened and looking haggard. Upon looking closely at her he saw bruises in her arms which suggested that she had been badly assaulted.
Knowing that Neema could not express herself freely before her guardians Hosea forcibly took Neema away to talk to her. In the security of her father Neema broke open; she said of how she was beaten to the extent of falling unconscious. She even did not notice what was exactly used to assault her although the wounds suggest a hot object may have been used as well.
CCT field personnel chipped in once information reached them. They advised Neema’s parents to report the case to police so that medical procedures may commence and also that Khalidi could be brought to police for questioning. After settling police procedures the girl was taken to a dispensary, but the doctor who attended her worried that the girl might have her waist fractured, since she could not sit down. The girl was therefore referred to Singida Regional hospital on 24th of November 2014. Since then she has been getting better although Khalid has run away and police are making all efforts to get him.
How did Neema find herself in this calamity? It was a normal day to her: outside with friends and holding Khalid’s baby. Khalid was also in his chores and on the day he was carrying some wood with an ox-cart when he passed by Neema and other children. Upon noticing the risk of passing by the children Khalid issued a warning for kids to get off the way. Kids sprang to their feet and made way for the coming cart. In the course of getting up the baby fell off Neema’s hands onto the ground. There a happy bright day turned into the worst nightmare!
Although the baby was not hurt Khalid went for a punishing spree, to both Neema and his wife. The wife being more energetic and with better judgment chose to run for her safety, leaving Neema behind to absorb all the wrath Khalid could unleash. She was beaten with no one to help, except when her nerves could take no more pain and she passed out. When she fell unconscious Khalid laid her to her bed as if she had just fallen asleep. There is neither record nor sign that she received first aid; it is even not known for how many hours she passed out!
The members of Ngimu Paralegal Centre (NGIPACE) are following up to see that Khalid faces justice in due terms.