Zanu PF by-election candidate accused of rape

BULAWAYO - A Mzilikazi woman has made sensational rape allegations against Zanu PF’s candidate for the Nkulumane by-election and central committee member Killian Sibanda.

This emerged last Friday after Achiwangani Maseko, 37, of house number F9 Mzilikazi was granted a garnishee order by Bulawayo magistrate Adelaide Mbeure to have Sibanda’s maintenance fee deducted straight from his employer for their two-year-old daughter after he failed to pay consistently.

Sibanda is employed by a city-based private academic institution as a management accountant. He successfully filed his nomination papers two weeks ago after narrowly beating Alderman David Ndlovu in a highly-contested primary election that was marred by rigging, violence and vote-buying.

Part of the garnishee order issued to Sibanda’s employer in terms of section 6(5) or 9 (2) of the Maintenance Act reads: “Take notice that on 13 November 2015 the Maintenance Court of Bulawayo ordered your employee Killian Sibanda E.C Number 05 to pay $40 per month with effect from November 2015 since this order has not been complied with voluntarily by the said responsible person.”

Speaking to the Daily News soon after the court ruling, Maseko said she was forced to seek a garnishee order after the Zanu PF central committee member reneged on his promise to pay the monthly $40 allowance.

“We sired this child in very painful circumstances,” Maseko said.

“Killian had long been trying to propose love to me and I turned him down but one day he was told I was not feeling well and I was home alone. He paid me a visit and taking advantage of my situation, he raped me once and this resulted in conception,” she said.

“My efforts to report the matter to the police were frustrated after he kept threatening me using his connections in the police.”

Maseko, who visibly looked aggrieved, said while she finally accepted that she had a child, what pained her most was that Sibanda was failing to pay for the little allowance following an initial court ruling.

“I have nothing to do with his political ambitions but one can imagine what kind of a leader he can be. He is failing to pay such a small fee considering his position in the party and where he works. His own child has no birth certificate up to now and who does he want to represent if he is violating the rights of children and women? Even President Robert Mugabe cannot allow that.”

While Sibanda admitted to siring the child with Maseko, he rubbished most of the claims, saying she was being used by opponents to tarnish his image ahead of the by-election set for December 19.

“That lady is the mother of my child,” Sibanda told the Daily News.

“For some time, I have been maintaining my child but now I am sure because of these elections she is being pushed by those who don’t support me to tarnish my image.”

A day before the Zanu PF primary election was held, there was a demonstration at the party’s provincial headquarters, Davies Hall from a section of party members from Nkulumane who were against Sibanda’s participation in the election.

Sibanda said Maseko, who is also a Zanu PF member, was part of those people despite the fact that she is from Makokoba constituency.

“To my surprise, she was part of those demonstrators and it became apparent to me that she was being pushed by my rivals to tarnish my image.”

Sibanda also dismissed allegations that he had failed to oblige with the court’s ruling of the monthly maintenance pay-out to the child despite the court documents in possession of the Daily News indicating that he was in arrears.

“That’s a lie because I have been paying that money just that sometimes our salaries delay resulting also in the delay in paying the required money so she took advantage of that and went for the garnishee order.”

Asked why Maseko would want to taint his image at this crucial moment when he is fancying his chances for a parliamentary ticket, Sibanda described her as “an aggrieved somebody who is just being manipulated by (his) adversaries.”

On the rape allegations, Sibanda further dismissed them: “That’s nonsense, why then didn’t she report the matter to the police and why is she coming for maintenance to a rapist? That does not make any sense. She once raised the same allegations in front of some police officers and they told her off.”

Outside the maintenance issue, Maseko has also been dragged to court twice by Sibanda’s wife Isabel Zanele. In August, Isabel appealed for a peace order under case number BOP 109/15, alleging that Maseko was constantly harassing her at her Nkulumane home as well as sending abusive text messages.

Magistrate Evelyn Mashavakuve, however, ordered Maseko not to visit Isabel and stop sending abusive text messages but allowed her to visit Sibanda at his workplace as the two had a child.

A few weeks later, Isabel dragged Maseko to court on allegations of assault and threats of violence but Maseko was acquitted due to lack of evidence.

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