George Emmanuel International School director convicted of kidnap, assault

Yeukai Karengezeka Court Correspondent


The director of George Emmanuel International School in Nyabira, Leonard Chiwaya, who kidnapped a contractor and forced him to perform labour at his home, has been found guilty of the charge.


Chiwaya (56), who was facing charges of kidnapping and assault, was convicted by Harare Magistrate Caroline Matanga after a full trial.


He kidnapped Tinotenda Sephani, who had come to the school to install some lights.


The State Prosecutor Ms Takudzwa Chitenderu proved to the court that Chiwaya kidnapped Sephani after he falsely accused him of stealing three laptops and pairs of school shoes.


Chiwaya, in the company of Taziva, another accused who is still at large, escorted Sephani from George Emmanuel International School to Goodhope, Harare, one of the accused’s houses.


The court heard, upon arrival, Sephani was locked inside a small room and spent the whole night in the room.


On March 7 last year, Chiwaya’s wife ordered Sephani to clean the yard the whole day as punishment for stealing the laptops and school shoes.


After performing these duties, Chiwaya ordered Sephani to be locked in the same room to restrict movement.


He also ordered him to perform these duties until March 8.


The following day, Sephani was ferried from Goodhope to Bluffhill in Marlborough, where he performed duties at Chiwaya’s wife’s younger sister’s home up to around 4 pm.



This was when Chiwaya’s wife confronted Sephani over the stolen goods, and he denied stealing anything.


Chiwaya then slapped him in the face.


It is understood that Sephani managed to escape while at Chiwaya’s sister-in-law’s home and fled to Westgate, where he later filed a police report.


In handing down her ruling, Magistrate Matanga noted that Chiwaya, who was involved in the theft at the school, tried to use kidnapping and put the blame for the crime on Sephani.

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