‘Abusive’ 22-year-old relationship spills into court

Ivan Zhakata

Court Correspondent

The rocky end of a 22-year old relationship was seen in the Harare Civil Court when Chipo Mujuru dragged her boyfriend Norbert Mavhunga before magistrate Ms Meenal Narotam seeking a protection order against him claiming that he physically, verbally and emotionally abused her, threatening her with unspecified action.

The court heard that the two have been in a relationship for 22 years but the relationship has now fallen on the rocks. Mujuru said she has been a victim in her relationship as Mavhunga controls her and forbids her to do anything without consulting him first or she risks being assaulted.

“I am applying for a protection order. The applicant is my boyfriend. We have a child together but he is constantly physically assaulting me and issues threats that he will hurt me and is willing to go to prison for me. He does this in front of the children and my aunt.

“His assaults are so grave because he hits my head against the wall, chokes me and kicks me. On February 14 this year he forbade me to leave the house and he once knocked me with his vehicle while I was carrying our child on my back,” Mujuru said before shedding tears in court.

She once filed a police report against Mavhunga but later withdrew it after he apologised only to abuse her a few weeks after the withdrawal.

“He told me that he is well connected and nothing can happen to him. I am now on the verge of depression and suicide because I am living with a man who says he is connected and nothing can happen to him even if I filed police reports,” Mujuru said.

Mavhunga denied the allegation counter-claiming that Mujuru is the one who was leading a promiscuous lifestyle and wanted to get rid of him.

“I deny all the allegations levelled against me and the protection order she is applying for. If the protection order is to be granted, I wish it to be a mutual order because she is abusing me too. I have been in a relationship with Chipo since 1999 which makes it 22 years now.

“I deny all the allegations in their entirety. She says I am not man enough because I live at her mother’s house. 

“I only assaulted her in self-defence and I have never abused her in any way. She is creating a scene so that she can get a favourable judgement,” he said.

Mavhunga later on consented to Mujuru being granted her order before telling the court that he was also going to make an application for his protection. 

Ms Narotam granted the order and ordered Mavhunga to refrain from abusing Mujuru in any way or risk being arrested.

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