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A sad tale of a woman’s ‘escape’ from abusive husband to prison – Chronicle

The Chronicle

Michael Magoronga, Midlands Correspondent 

SHE wears a smile as she trudges towards the prison gate.

The smile is however a thin veil of anguish, anger and disappointment engraved in her soul.

She is a troubled woman who can’t comprehend the reason why she is languishing in prison.

Sofia Kutama (40) is among the few prisoners allowed to participate during commemorations to mark 16 days of Activism against Gender-based Violence (GBV) together with stakeholders from Kwekwe District, comprising Government departments and non-governmental organisations.

Soccer, netball, drama, music, dance and of course, food, were the order of the day as the stakeholders sought to bring awareness to inmates on GBV issues.

For Kutama, although she was present physically, her mind seemed to be far off.

After being granted permission to interview her by prison authorities at Kwekwe Prison, Kutama tells her harrowing story.

“I’m thinking of my children. I’m afraid that their father might abuse the girls, especially the eldest one since he’s staying with them in a single room,” she said as the conversation took off.

That alone leaves one wondering how such a caring mother found her way into prison.

She is serving a 10-month jail term for assaulting her husband and has now served six with expectations that she will complete her sentence next month.

She fought back tears as she narrated how her husband, whom she said was abusive, got her arrested and subsequently jailed.

Married for more than 15 years, Kutama and her husband have four children, two girls and two boys, with the eldest daughter aged 15.

What went wrong, one wonders.

“He simply lost love for me. The relationship became irretrievably broken and he wouldn’t eat my food, let alone talk to me. I don’t know what he was told by some traditional healers he had consulted,” said Kutama.

It started in October 2021 when she travelled to her rural home in Chimanimani.

Upon her return, she found that her husband had changed.

Her husband, she alleges, had been told by a traditional healer that she has a bad omen and he needed to get rid of her.

“He didn’t even talk to me and to make matters worse, he tried to convince our children that I was a bad woman. But my first-born daughter stood with me while the rest supported their father. It was a divided family yet we stayed together,” she narrated.

As things got worse, her husband was no longer buying food neither was he speaking to her so she decided to go back to her family to narrate her ordeal.

She stayed there for four months and upon her return, her daughter who supported her, had eloped.

“She was forced by circumstances. Her father always threatened to beat her up and was depriving her of food. She was left with no option but to move in with her boyfriend although she was under age. My heart sank when I was told the news and I decided to come back,” she narrated.

Sofia Kutama

Upon her return, she confronted her husband about the whereabouts of their daughter and the interaction degenerated into a fight.

“He was overpowering me and I ended up biting his finger and he started bleeding. He went straight to the police camp and filed a report,” said Kutama.

The matter was taken to court where she pleaded guilty and was sentenced to a jail term which was later converted to community service.

The issues at her home continued with her husband, she claimed, becoming even more hostile by the day.

“I had nowhere to go; my family had told me to stay there no matter what. Besides, I wondered what would happen to my children if I left as he didn’t want to let me go with them,” she said.

“We had an argument as he was now in the habit of locking foodstuffs in a cupboard and the children and I would spend the whole day without eating anything. So I confronted him and we fought.”

Again, he went and made a police report and she was picked up by the cops while doing community service.

“The magistrate told me that I was becoming a nuisance and I deserved a jail term as a deterrent. That’s when I was sentenced to 10 months in prison,” she said.

Before she was imprisoned, her daughter who had eloped had given birth to a baby boy and had returned home after having her own challenges in her marriage.

“Her husband had another wife. He was way older than her and the first wife would often abuse her and I told her to come back home. But now she’s staying with her father together with the other children. My worry is that she might be abused since I’m not there to fend for her. She’s the only one who understood me and she might suffer on my behalf,” she said as tears welled in her eyes.

Her husband has no history of sexual abuse, she said.

Kutama said she had learnt a lot in prison.

“I was taught how to control my anger and to use my hands to earn a living — not to rely too much on my husband. As soon as I get out, I want to take my children and grandchild and start a new life,” she said.

Kutama said all she wanted were the children.

“He doesn’t love me anymore and I can’t force it. He should give me my children so that I can start a new life,” she said.

According to the Zimbabwe Gender Commission, cases of GBV were escalating despite the enactment of the Domestic Violence Act.

Sofia Kutama

“GBV remains both prevalent and vastly under-reported as many survivors decide to suffer in silence rather than risk stigmatisation or due to lack of punitive and deterrent sentences. What is particularly worrying is the fact that violence against women and girls is one of the most rampant human rights violations,” said the Zimbabwe Gender Commission in a recent statement.

GBV is also a barrier to achieving Sustainable Development Goal number 5 on gender equality and women empowerment.

“The Domestic Violence Act explicitly provides for the right to dignity, personal freedom and security from human and degrading treatment, and such cases continue to escalate. In addition to devastating impacts on dignity, security and wellbeing of survivors, violence against women also has a broad social impact and economic cost including costs on public services, lost income and productivity,” the commission said.

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Family beams with pride as son leads N.W.T. futsal team to 2 victories in 1 day –

It was a close game, but the N.W.T.’s junior male futsal team eked out a 2-1 win against Alaska at the Arctic Winter Games on Tuesday — and then went on to a sweeping 13-2 win against Team Nunavut.

As team captain Tanaka Muwirimi played that first game at the Syncrude Sport and Wellness Centre in Fort McMurray, Alta., he saw his hero — his dad, Panganai Muwirimi — up in the stands cheering him on.

“He’s my idol, in my opinion. He’s always been there,” Tanaka said after his team won against Alaska. “He coached most of my teams, he really helped me improve my game. He was strong; when I had bad games, he was there. Good games, he was there.”

A portrait of a couple, with the man's hands resting on the woman's shoulders and his head leaning against hers.
Panganai Muwirimi, left, and Philder Nyadembera watched their son play futsal at the Arctic Winter Games this week. (George Maratos/CBC)

Tuesday’s games were just two of 15 futsal matches teams from the Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Alberta, Alaska and Nordic countries (Team Sápmi) are playing this week. They also follow a 4-2 loss against Team Yukon on Monday.

Speaking to CBC, Panganai didn’t have the words to express how it felt to watch his son lead his team to victory.

“It’s great to see your son playing, doing what he loves best. And I’m able to be available and present with him, supporting him,” Panganai said.

A portrait of a youth wearing a jersey.
Tanaka Muwirimi, the center back for Team N.W.T.’s futsal team, played at the Arctic Winter Games this week. (George Maratos/CBC)

Philder Nyadembera, Tanaka’s mom, said they’ve been sending videos and photos to their family members back in Zimbabwe, “so they can feel a little bit of what we’re feeling.”

From Zimbabwe to Yellowknife

Panganai and his family moved from Zimbabwe to the U.S., and then to Toronto, where Tanaka was born. They eventually went west to Alberta, before Nyadembera accepted a job at the Stanton Territorial Hospital in Yellowknife.

Panganai said he started coaching his son in soccer because he saw the talent Tanaka had and wanted to help him succeed.

Watching Tanaka represent the N.W.T. at the Arctic Winter Games “feels great,” he added.

“Mainly, because Canada accepted us and we feel like we are giving back, and my son is giving back,” he said.

Soccer runs in the Muwirimi family. Panganai played in high school and college when he was younger, and several other family members have played as well.

Tanaka Muwirimi talks about his team’s recent wins at Arctic Winter Games

1 hour ago

Duration 6:56

Tanaka Muwirimi, the team captain for the N.W.T.’s futsal team at AWG2023, and his family tell the story of their journey to the Northwest Territories and what soccer means to them.

Given that family history, Tanaka said, he’d like to one day go pro.

“It’s a passion of ours, we love the sport. It would be very nice to have that in my job, my career path,” he said. “It’s not just talent that brings you there — it’s hard work and dedication that really gets you to where you want to be.”

Hard work and dedication aside, Nyadembera said her advice to her son has always been the same: take time to enjoy what you’re doing.

“In everything, we always tell him to be able to enjoy,” Nyadembera said. “Because there’s no point in you doing things that you don’t enjoy.”

The N.W.T. junior male futsal team plays Wednesday night against Alberta North, which has won two out of the three games it’s played so far, before squaring off against Team Sápmi Thursday afternoon. Team Sápmi has won two of its games and tied a third.

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Marvelous Nakamba lands at Luton Town – Bulawayo24 News

ASTON Villa’s Warriors midfielder Marvelous Nakamba is taking a status downgrade with a loan move to English Championship side Luton Town where he can however, resuscitate his limping career at a team and level he is guaranteed game time, at least.

The 29-year-old whose contract with the Birmingham side expires mid-next year has been living on borrowed time at Villa Park having been openly told by manager Unai Emery to look for an alternative home.

And with no suitors showing up, Nakamba’s situation was increasingly becoming desperate with the clock ticking towards deadline which lapsed last night.

So delicate was the position, Nakamba was facing the sad reality of being offloaded.

However, West Bromwich Albion, who also play in the English Championship where they are 10th on the table had shown interest on Monday but they couldn’t act quick enough.

And they were overtaken by Luton Town who wasted no time in agreeing a loan move for the former Bantu Rovers man.

He underwent his medicals at The Hatters yesterday afternoon with the Zimbabwean joining the Bedfordshire club yesterday evening.

Luton Town confirmed on their website last night they had captured the signature of the Zimbabwean midfielder.

“We are delighted to announce the loan signing of Aston Villa midfielder Marvelous Nakamba for the remainder of the season” read the statement on Luton Town’s website.

The club manager Rob Edwards hailed Nakamba as a hardworking midfielder who can help his team secure promotion into the EPL.

“We’re so pleased to be able to bring Marvelous in. That position is one we’ve been looking to fill for a while. I think we’ve got a lot of good midfielders, but not many natural, deep midfield players and I really like what he’s about,” Edwards told the club site.

“He’s got a brilliant attitude, great physicality, good quality and I think he really suits the way we play, so he will fit in really well with us.

“He’s had amazing experiences playing in the Premier League and Champions League, and we want him to bring all of that to try to help improve us.

“There are difficult decisions within this window, but everything that we are trying to do is always with an aim to try to keep improving and moving forward, and we feel that being able to get Marvelous in the building to the end of the season is a real coup for us.”

Nakamba was equally elated with the move.

Speaking after finalising his medical at The Brache, Nakamba said: “I’m very happy to be here at Luton Town. I know Henri Lansbury from Aston Villa and Ethan Horvath because I played with him at Club Brugge, so it’s a good feeling to see them again,” he said.

“I spoke with the gaffer and he told me about the project of the club and I told him my situation, that it was interesting for me to come over here.

“I think it’s good for the club, great for me and I love the ambition at the club. I’m looking forward to contributing to help the team.”

Nakamba was told he can leave Villa this month after a conversation with (Villa manager) Unai Emery.

The Villa boss spoke with a number of first-team stars earlier this month to inform them that they could find new clubs before the window shuts. Villa have let go of Cameron Archer and Morgan Sanson on loan, while Fredric Guilbert has joined the midfielder in Strasborg on a permanent contract.”

Nakamba will be hoping to help the Rob Edwards’ side to secure at least a play-off spot by the end of the season.

Luton Town are currently seventh in the Championship table with 42 points in 27 games (before their match against Cardiff City last night).

They are 20 points behind leaders Burnley and 17 adrift of an automatic qualification slot currently occupied by Sheffield United.

They can still get promoted via the play-offs if they can notch a top-six place in the marathon.

And Nakamba, who could as well move permanently to Luton Town at the end of the loan deal according to reports could still bounce back in the top-flight, in style should The Hatters clip promotion.

He is still a highly-regarded individual across England despite some hesitancy by top-flight clubs in that country to draw him to their homes.

Although there was reported interest from Fulham, Nottingham Forest and Newcastle, there were no formal requests made by those teams to Villa.

Nakamba who has accumulated 26 caps with the Warriors, has not featured for Aston Villa this season either under the sacked Steven Gerrard or Emery.

His last appearance for the club came against Manchester City in a 3-2 loss at the end of last season.

The defensive midfielder arrived at Villa Park from Club Brugge in 2019 for a fee in the region of US$11 million and walked straight into the first 11 under former manager Dean Smith.

He played 29 games in his first season before falling down the perking order in the two seasons that followed.

And he will be hoping to find himself again with a fresh start at Luton Town.

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January transfer deadline day deals – SuperSport

Latest news and highlights from Europe’s top soccer leagues on transfer deadline day:


Fulham completed the signing of central midfielder Sasa Lukic from Torino for an undisclosed fee.

Lukic agreed a four-and-a-half-year deal, with an option to extend it by a further 12 months.

“I’m very happy to have signed, and to now be a part of Fulham’s squad,” the 26-year-old said.


Spanish forward Ayoze Perez has joined La Liga outfit Real Betis on loan for the rest of the season from Leicester City.


* Joao Cancelo to Bayern Munich: Loan
* Mykhailo Mudryk to Chelsea: €100 million
* Anthony Gordon to Newcastle United: £45 million
* Cody Gakpo to Liverpool: £37 million
* Benoit Badiashile to Chelsea: £35 million
* Georginio Rutter to Leeds United: €40 million
* Noni Madueke to Chelsea: €35 million
* Leandro Trossard to Arsenal: £27 million
* Malo Gusto to Chelsea: £26.3 million
* Dango Ouattara to Bournemouth: £20 million


Tottenham Hotspur right back Djed Spence has joined Ligue 1 side Stade Rennais on loan for the rest of the season, joining fellow Spurs defender Joe Rodon who joined the French club in August.

Spence, signed for £12.5 million with another £7.5 million in add-ons in July, has made only four substitute appearances in the Premier League.


Leeds United defender Diego Llorente has joined Serie A side AS Roma on loan until the end of the season after losing his spot in the back line to Liam Cooper, Robin Koch and new signing Max Wober.


Aston Villa have recalled Bertrand Traore from his loan spell at Istanbul Basaksehir FK.

The club’s Zimbabwe international Marvelous Nakamba and 20-year-old English fellow midfielder Aaron Ramsey have gone out on loan to Luton Town and Middlesbrough respectively.


Bayern Munich’s Marcel Sabitzer could join Manchester United, who are looking for midfield cover after losing Christian Eriksen to an ankle injury, British media and Sky Germany reported.


Leicester City completed the signing of Ghanaian striker Nathan Opoku from FDM Field Masters Sporting Club. The 21-year-old will join Belgian side OH Leuven on loan for the remainder of the season.


Fulham mutually agreed to terminate the contract of midfielder Josh Onomah, who made only two substitute appearances this season.


Manchester United have lost Christian Eriksen to an ankle injury for three months but manager Erik ten Hag said they would not sign a replacement on deadline day.

“On deadline day it’s difficult, you can’t make policy on such bad injuries,” Ten Hag said.

“But we have players in the midfield department, good players. We have players who can fill the gap.

“It’s quite clear Eriksen brings top quality to our squad and he has some specifics that are hard to replace, such as his impacts in the final third with his final ball.”


Arsenal said midfielder Mohamed Elneny has a “significant injury” to his right knee and required surgery, which has prompted the club to seek a replacement.

The club were knocked back in their attempt to sign Moises Caicedo from Brighton & Hove Albion but look set to sign Jorginho from Chelsea.


Chelsea midfielder Jorginho is poised to make a deadline day switch to Arsenal, with British media reporting the Italian is undergoing his medical ahead of a £12-million move.


Manchester City full back Joao Cancelo has completed a loan switch to Bayern Munich, who have the option to buy the Portugal international at the end of the season.


Scottish right back Harrison Ashby has joined Newcastle United from West Ham United.

“Harrison is a very talented young player with a lot of potential so we are delighted to sign him. He has very good attributes so we are looking forward to working with him in this exciting new chapter of his career,” coach Eddie Howe said.


Highly-rated youngster Diogo Monteiro has joined Leeds United on a three-and-a-half year deal from Swiss Super League side Servette, where the defender made his senior debut at the age of 16. Monteiro has also played for Portugal’s youth teams.


Arsenal winger Marquinhos, 19, has joined second-tier Championship side Norwich City on loan for the rest of the season. He made six appearances in all competitions since joining Arsenal in June.

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