The boy, who stays in Kuwadzana and committed the crime in Mbare where he had visited a relative, was brought to Harare Magistrates’ Courts for trial.

He denied the charges when his trial commenced before regional magistrate Mr Peter Kumbawa.

However, he was convicted of two counts of rape in view of the overwhelming evidenced stacked against him after a fully contested trial.

Mr Kumbawa ordered the boy to be returned to prison to have four strokes of canning administered on him by a prescribed prison officer as punishment.

In passing sentence, Mr Kumbawa noted that the boy was still young hence a custodial sentence would harden him into a hard core criminal.

"Offences of this nature call for a heavy penalty but in this case, we have to exercise great leniency to enable the boy to grow up and learn adulthood," he said.

The magistrate also considered the environment in which the boy was when he committed the crime.

"The boy committed the crime in Mbare a high-density area, hence the surrounding environment could have been a negative influence to him," said Mr Kumbawa.

The court heard that on August 14 last year, the five-year-old girl was playing outside their Matapi hostel with her friend aged four when the boy approached them.

The boy took the little girls to the upper floor of the same block of flat and locked them in a room.

He then forcibly stripped naked the five-year-old girl and raped her once. Although she screamed no one came to her rescue. After a while the boy turned to the other girl and raped her once before releasing the girls, the court heard.

The offence came to light when the aunt of the five-year-old noticed some yellowish watery discharge coming out from the girl’s genitals. Upon quizzing her, the minor narrated her ordeal to her aunt who then went to tell the mother of the other girl.

A report was made to the police and the children were taken to Harare Central Hospital for medical examination where it was confirmed that the girls were sexually abused and infected with an STI

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