Gift Mativenga (34), the husband and his step-daughter, Brenda Bhebhe (22), of 9223 Cowdray Park were not asked to plead to contravening Section 75 of the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act, (having sexual intercourse within a prohibited degree of relationship) when they briefly appeared before Bulawayo magistrate, Mrs Lindiwe Mbizwo at Western Commonage Magistrates Courts.

They were remanded on their own cognisance to 25 September.In his statement, Mativenga said he did not know that Bhebhe was her step-daughter since his wife, Ms Catherine Washaya (38) introduced her to him as her younger sister.

Bhebhe said she was in love with him and was ready to marry him.The "couple" has since been blessed with a child. Washaya and Mativenga are alleged to have been childless.In her statement to the police, Washaya said she discovered in June that her daughter was pregnant and confronted her, but she denied.

"I then thought that she was just ill but when I asked my husband he told me that he was the one who had impregnated her. We then had a quarrel and from that day he was assaulting me for no reason," she said.

Ms Washaya said she had to seek advice from her relatives in Inyathi who then took custody of the daughter.

"After having taken my daughter to my rural home, my husband started assaulting me almost everyday telling me to go and bring her back.

“I then went and collected her and left them in the house in July and I came back to Bulawayo last week, when I made a report to the police."

Mrs Charity Nyathi for the State told the court that sometime in January, the pair was involved in a sexual relationship.As a result Bhebhe got pregnant and now has.The mother has since left her matrimonial home to her daughter and is now living with her brother.