File Photo: Lusaka Magistrate Court.
RABECCA BANDA writes
A juvenile has narrated in the Lusaka magistrates’ court how older boys beat and force him to use the toilet barefoot in the cells.
The boy, 15 years of age, told Magistrate Nsunge Chanda that he was being mistreated in the cells.
“They are heartless boys who don’t like me, they beat me in the cells. They took my shoes and let me go to the toilet bare foot,” he said.
“I want to go home and live with my mother. I don’t want to go back to cells,” he said with fear in his eyes.
The boy is accused of assaulting a child on 24 December 2019.
A social welfare officer stood in for his parents who were absent and the boy took plea admitting the charge.
Magistrate: Did you assault the boy?
Magistrate: why did you beat him?
Juvenile: I was with my friends but they ran away.
Magistrate: What did he do?
Juvenile: My friend sent him to buy a cigarette but he took long. When he returned, my friends started beating him.
Magistrate: What time was it?
Juvenile: It was around 19:00 hours.
Magistrate: Was the boy you beat up hurt?
Juvenile: Yes, on the head.
Magistrate Chanda said the boy’s mother doesn’t want him because she complained that he ran away from home after he was given bail.
“I can tell the boy is scared and not lying about what is happening in the cells,” she said.
She said though concerned with what is happening to him at cells but could not let him go home because his parents were absent.
Magistrate Chanda told the social welfare officer to contact the parents to the boy.