A FIVE-YEAR-OLD Glendale boy believed to have suffered serious abuse at the hands of her aunt has been taken to a safe house.

Police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the case is under investigation and the child has been taken to a safe place.

“Police are investigating a case of child abuse in Glendale,” said Ass Comm Nyathi.

He said preliminary investigations had shown that the video circulating on social media was not related to the Glendale incident.

“That video has been circulating on social media for some time and we continue to appeal to members of the public to supply us with information where that woman on the video can be found.

“However, the child has been taken to a safe place awaiting medical examination reports and interviewing the accused person’s neighbours,” said Ass Comm Nyathi.

H-Metro visited the Glendale family yesterday and the boy’s aunt Maria Mugwali, 40, who dismissed the video circulating together with the whistle blower’s alleged abuse message saying she was not the one on the video and the child had not suffered the alleged disability.

Mugwali, a mother of three and ardent follower of Mugodhi Apostolic Church told

H-Metro that the boy had been under her custody for the past two years following the death of his father.

“To start with, I want to believe that you

H-Metro saw that I am not the one in the video of a woman beating a child,” said Mugwali.

“The person who circulated the message has a personal vendetta against me and the house owner.

“Information on names and location are true but as an ardent Mugodhi Apostolic church member I would never abuse my late brother’s child.

“Social Welfare officials and police came and discovered that the person on video was not me.

“They took the child to Social Welfare and the case is now being handled by police.

“The boy is so naughty that at one time he threw his faeces at our neighbour’s house.

“I could not let him go unpunished, I disciplined him accordingly but not in anger.

“His mother had this only child with my late brother and I do not know where she stays.

“When they got married she already had her own three children,” said Mugwali.

However, Mugwali’s neighbours and church members described her as abusive and heartless.

“We want to thank Social Welfare officials for taking the child because he would spend the whole day without eating,” said one of the neighbours.

“Asi ukamuona mwana wacho akasimba nenyaya yekudya kushamwari saka aizosvika orohwa zvinonzwisa tsitsi.

“To our surprise, this woman is a church member and in the same denomination with our local councillor.

“She is very abusive and heartless but if you see her preaching you’ll be shocked,” said one of the neighbours.

Mugwali is a caretaker at Honourable Remigio Matangira’s house.

Matangira told H-Metro that he was not aware of the abuse case and no-one ever approached him about the matter.

“That house under construction has no other tenants besides the Mugwali family who are not paying rentals since they are just looking after it,” said Hon Matangira.

“I do not know if the abuse story is true or false since I do not stay there.

“None of the neighbours approached me about the abuse, although I have been visiting the place for the past month.

“All the developments done there were carried out within a month after one of my daughters living abroad sent money for the construction.

“I learnt of the abuse through social media and was quick to dismiss it since the woman on the circulating video is totally different from the accused.

“How the whistle blower decided to mention the owner of house without informing me remains a big question considering that I am a politician and law maker.

“I suspect that there is someone behind this who is after assassinating my character,” said Matangira.

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