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The unfolding story for Amina…

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As the World commemorated the African Day of the Child, a different kind of story was unfolding for Amina  Kidule and her family in Ulaya Kibaoni village, 32 kilometers from Kilosa town. At just 16, Amina is mother to a three month old baby boy.

The terms of her motherhood are worryingly, remarkably more and more common in Tanzania as she claims that the former head teacher at the local primary school she was attending at the time raped her.

The Kilosa District Education Officer Mohamed Maje confirms having received a complaint from the Kibwe family and having forwarded it to the police for investigation.

According to Maje, in the year 2009/2010, Kilosa District recorded 62 cases of school girl pregnancies which were currently under investigation. He had no further information on these cases.

Meanwhile, the national statistics on school dropout rates seem to show an increase in cases the number of primary school drop-outs rose to 44,742 in 2006 from 32,469 the previous year and a total of 7,734 students abandoned secondary school studies in 2006, up from 6,912 in 2005. More than 30 percent of Tanzanian children fail to complete seven years of primary education, while in secondary schools, the drop-out rate is 20 percent, Ludovic Mwananzila, Deputy Minister for Education and Vocational Training, was quoted as saying in the year 2007.

He also said that drop-outs due to pregnancy were higher in some areas than in others, citing the southern region of Mtwara where at least 400 school-girls became pregnant in 2006. In Rukwa in the southwest, 200 school-girls discontinued their studies for similar reasons.

According to Amina and her father, her current dilemma began in June last year when Amina was chosen to clean the head teacher’s office every morning before class. So, it was her duty to wake up early, walk to his home to pick up the keys to the office and then head to school.

Amina Kidule, her son and father at their home in Ulaya Kibaoni village.

One day, when Amina had only been busy in the office for a few minutes, the older man came in and closed the door. He proceeded to threaten to cane her at school daily if she called out and then he raped her.

“I did not have a choice and though I tried to resist him and called for help, no one came to my rescue as it was very early in the morning and apart from us, no one had arrived at the school. He warned me not to reveal what happened to anyone else and said that my doing so would result in heavy punishment. So I swallowed the pain all alone, and few days later he did the same thing to me,” says Amina.

So guess what?  When a month later her periods didn’t come, Amina, full of worries that she might be pregnant, talked to her head teacher who assured her it was normal. The following month though, Amina knew she was in trouble. She was in standard seven. .

Knowing that trouble would follow if the truth came out, this time around her head teacher promised to take care of her, the baby she was expecting, and to make sure she would not be stopped from sitting for  the national examinations at the end of primary school.

“All the promises were made on condition that I named my cousin Juma as the responsible man. He also promised to take me to secondary school even if I didn’t perform well,” says Amin.

He also told her to go to the clinic and get a clinic card issued with the other man named as the father of the expected baby, which is what Amina did.

“I was not thinking by then; I was stressed and confused, and just three days later, as I came from the hospital his wife and another female teacher called me to her house and asked who was responsible for my condition. As I was ordered, I lied to them and they did not ask any more questions but instead told me to go back to class.”

At three months though, having received no support, Amina decided to go to the clinic and lie to the nurse about losing her clinic card. When issued with a new one, she then gave the name of the real father of the baby.

“I was dreaming of being either a teacher or a police officer but now all the dreams and hope have gone away because of a teacher. No one will help me get back to school. I don’t think I get a job anywhere and my brain is not settled. Her family came to realize Amina was pregnant three months later, though it took a week for Amina to mention who was responsible  a week later after her father threatened to chase her away from his house.

Everyone in the family was left with a big surprise on how the teacher who know the importance of education and children’s right to do such a thing.

Amina’s father started process to meet the local leaders at the Ulaya ward though it took more than a month to get a letter to allow him file a case, he filed a case but a lawyer could not allow the hearing since he said the primary court has no powers to deal with criminal offence so he have to take it to the police.

He decided to go back home to re-think on where to get money for transport and accommodation while in Kilosa taking the case to the Police Station.

“It was very challenging since I didn’t have money though some other villages warned me to stops as no one will pay attention since the teacher is also the employer of the government, I didn’t pay attention to them since I wanted the teacher to be punished for what he have done,” says Kidule.

Three days late he got bus fare and send her daughter in Kilosa District and he walked km….by foot to the District Education officer to tell him about the case and its going, they was ordered to take the case to the Police Station as the lawyer did.

Direct to the Police Station with a memo from the District Education Officer for them to be assisted, over there they was ordered to the Hospital for pregnancy test, and a day later the accused was arrested by the Police.

Surprisingly we was told to go home without even our complains being taken by the police officers, and on the same day Kidule saw Mbale at home and two days later Amina’s father went back to the Police to see how is the going but he was told to go home that they have to wait for investigations and they will be informed.

A month ago Amina and her father was called at the Hospital and they was told the accused is not guilty since the investigations showed that Amina  had two clinic cards one for Juma and the one for Mbale ,though Amina said that Mbale told her to lie so that to protect him police officers insisted that they have to hold the case until Khalid is being arrested  for further investigations.

A week later Khalid was arrested, Juma denied the accusations and said that he had never seen Amina since she was in standard three when Khalid was going back to his home place in Ulanga District in Lupilo village.

They was asked to go back at the Police station on 26th April, and they was told that their case has a lot of contradictions so they have to go for DNA test at the Ocean Road in Dar es Salaam and since then they have not been called by the police.

“That is how it happened, and I don’t think if justice will be made, as I shared with you can notice some kind of delays to work on the case, as you know raping case and impregnating a child under 18 years is only being done in two months time, only 60 days, but it is almost 360 days so do you think I will find justice,? ” he says.

Mbale who was demoted by the Kilosa District Council Authority following the accusations four months after the accusations from  being the  Head teacher to a normal teacher he did not pick up his cell phone when I tried to reach him.

Asha breastfeeds her son

I made efforts to visit his home, his wife said he did not know where to find her husband as he left the house like twenty minutes ago, “I don’t know where he is, I have also heard about the accusations but since investigation is still going on I cannot comment on anything,” she said.

She is also a teacher at the same school.

I got an opportunity to meet Mbale but since I didn’t knew him before I could not use the opportunity to have an interview with him, he is in his 40’s.

Mbale became a Head teacher at Ulaya Kibaoni since 2007 up to last year,  he is the father of five children.

One of the top officials in education department said that though the teacher is denying but she think that the child is his as they look alike.

NOTE: Names have been changed

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14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Baraka

    21/06/2010 at 9:27 pm

    Salome,
    Its so unfortunate that people are living misarable lives because of not knowing their rights!What kind of assistance as a journalist have you given Amina Kidule towards her problem? and bring back her dreams ambitions?

  2. salome

    22/06/2010 at 10:01 am

    Hello Baraka thanks for your comment.
    My work as a journalist is to inform and educate people, I have informed the society on what is happening down here,bringing back her dreams needs a support from both of us and not only me. It is possible to reach Amina, and the doors are open for anyone who needs to support her.

  3. Daniel Sempeho

    22/06/2010 at 10:23 am

    Salome,
    Your article is another piece of evidence that our country and community needs to embrace changes in attitude and behaviours.
    For example there is a need to address the issues that depresses people and in their state of depression sort to do unbelievable and “stupid” things.

  4. salome

    22/06/2010 at 10:40 am

    Hello Daniel, Thanks for your comment.

  5. Rakesh Rajani

    27/07/2010 at 2:03 pm

    Why not follow up on this with a) Ministry of Education and b) Chama cha Walimu Tanzania? Shouldn’t they be taking responsibility too?

  6. Maria Louga

    05/08/2010 at 3:04 pm

    Pole saana usikate tamaa nenda kwa mbunge wako akupe lifti hadi tume za haki za binadmu ukawaeleze

  7. salome

    09/08/2010 at 12:23 pm

    Thanks Rakesh, I will work on your comment.

  8. Bryt Paul

    27/08/2010 at 9:58 am

    Please contact me through the email Bryt Paul for more information on how to reach that Young lady.I will help her so that justice can be served and moreover I will help her fulfil her dreams to Become a teacher or a police woman.It was really painful.

  9. Bryt Paul

    27/08/2010 at 9:58 am

    Sorry the email is bryt.paul@live.com

  10. salome

    31/08/2010 at 1:06 am

    Thanks Paul,check your email

  11. Baba Caren

    11/09/2010 at 4:24 pm

    Hi Salome!
    We could have said that its due to the frustration being caused by unconducive working environment, but its absolutely not. Its his (headteacher)traits. Its good that we have TAMWA,TGNP and other law enforcers who can help eversince POLICE FORCE DEPARTMENT failed. So, I would advise to foward the case to the above mentioned associations as the way to justice.

  12. salome

    12/09/2010 at 2:52 pm

    Thanks Baba Caren,
    I will work on your comment and update my readers whats going on.

  13. rutashubanyuma

    23/09/2010 at 11:44 am

    Get CCM off our back by voting Chadema and life will be normal once again. Go Dr. Slaa Go to Ikulu and solve all these governance related misnomers…….

  14. Pukwa

    04/11/2010 at 3:42 pm

    As you heard from Dr. PhD, holder every thing needs change, you deserve to have the good one!!!

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