A Hwange woman landed herself in trouble after she ‘stole’ her own 11-year-old daughter who was in her mother-in-law’s custody after having abandoned the child when she was only a year old.

Emma Bere (27) of 127 Empumalanga in Hwange courted the wrath of the law and was charged with contempt of court following her violation of an order allowing her only a two-week visit to her daughter.

She was given the option to pay $20 or do 35 hours of community service when she appeared before provincial magistrate Ntando Gift Dube.

Bere, who admitted to the charge, told the court that her daughter had refused to return to her grandparents after her two-week visiting period had lapsed.

“My daughter refused to go back saying she wanted to stay with me. I also noticed that her school grades were very poor as she was taking the last position in class so I felt that it was best I live with her,” she said between sobs.

“As her mother, I deserve to be with her because she was taken away from me. I didn’t know I was erring by taking my own daughter.”

The court heard that on August 29 this year, Bere took her daughter from her grandmother, Lucy Shava, as per her two-week visit terms. This followed the awarding of custody of the minor child to Shava in 2017 under case number JC19/17 after Bere had dumped the girl at her mother-in-law’s house.

Both Bere and her ex-husband who lives in Harare were each allowed a two-week visit to the child. However after the stipulated two weeks lapsed Bere and the child were nowhere to be seen prompting Shava to make a police report.

She was ordered to bring the child back from Zambia where she had taken her and approach the civil court for remedy over custody.

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