Authorities from Zimbabwe and Kenya are working on paperwork to repatriate a seven-year-old boy from Nkayi who was kidnapped and taken to Kenya in 2016 in a case of human trafficking.
The boy, Awakhiwe Ackim Ncube was abducted while playing with other children in Nkayi’s area of Hompani and his parents only learnt that he was in Kenya through pictures circulating on social media.
He was last seen in his grandparents’ backyard.
Awakhiwe was found at Happy Children’s Home in Nairobi.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said a full statement will be issued today.
The mother Mrs Nobekezelo Maseko was recently quoted in the media saying, “One of the neighbours in Nkayi brought a picture which was sent by his son who is in South Africa. They went with it to show the grandfather of the child who saw without doubt that it was his grandson.”
She then reached out to the orphanage and a woman who runs it confirmed that her Awakhiwe was a resident at the home.
“I sent her a picture and Awakhiwe identified me. The mother, who keeps them, asked us which name are we using when we call him, we said Kim, which is short for Ackim. She then called him by that name and he answered back,” Mrs Maseko said.
Awakhiwe was kidnapped and drugged with two other children by the kidnappers who were headed to Kenya. The other two children were not Zimbabwean.
Upon reaching the border to Kenya, Awakhiwe is said to have started crying and demanding to be returned to his mother. Alert border officials became suspicious and detained the kidnappers as Awakhiwe was speaking in isiNdebele.
They thought the child was Zimbabwean or South African.
The suspected kidnappers, Margaret Juma Magero and David Ochieng Omentho, believed to married were arraigned before senior principal magistrate, Ms Diana Mochache in Shanzu Principal courts on December 13, 2016.
Ms Mochache directed that Awakhiwe and the two children be placed under the custody of Happy Children’s Home until their parents are found.
The other two children have since been identified, extradited to their home countries and reunited with their families.
However, the paperwork to bring back Awakhiwe is still being processed by the Embassy of Zimbabwe in Kenya.
In June last year, police managed to locate and bring back into the country from South Africa, a one-year-old baby boy who was kidnapped last December by a woman from Ushewokunze suburb in Harare.
The suspect who has been identified as Fortunate Tanyanyiwa has since gone into hiding in South Africa and police, working with Interpol are still looking for her.
Detectives from CID Homicide travelled to Polokwane, South Africa with the boy’s mother, Yvonne Machingo (21) and reunited the two following investigations.
Machingo, who also resides in Ushewokunze, approached Tanyanyiwa, alias Mai Tatenda, sometime in December last year saying she wanted to be led to a traditional healer who could attend to her then six-month-old baby who was not feeling well.
It is alleged that on December 12, 2020, the two went to Block 11, Shawasha Flats in Mbare where a traditional healer could assist Machingo.
Machingo was ordered to stay outside while Tanyanyiwa went with the child inside the healer’s house, but she never returned. After a few hours, Machingo tried to locate her, but to no avail.
She even tried calling, but her phone was switched off and a report was made to the police.
Police failed to locate Tanyanyiwa.