Gershom Mwansa, a clearing agent at Nakonde border, narrated how his pregnant wife, Mercy Kampamba, of the same village, stubbed him on the face, back, head and mouth using a knife and screw driver, after she allegedly rejected to keep four of her stepsons.
Mwansa, who also lost two of his premolars, said Kampamba later used a hammer to break his teeth after stubbing him.
“Ine ndi ne myaka yakufyalwa 40, elo umukashi wandi uwanchitile ifi ali na 21 years (I am aged 40 and my wife is 21). I married Mercy in February this year after divorcing my wife of eight years. We were just living well but misunderstandings started after I told Mercy that I wanted to start looking after my four sons I bore with my former wife,” he said.
“But Mercy got furious and refused my proposal and despite her anger, I went ahead and brought my children in the house because they are my sons, my very own blood and I couldn’t accept loving a woman more than my own children.”
Mwansa said upon Mercy realising that he had gone against her plea of not bringing her stepchildren in the house, she attempted to kill him.
“When I knocked off from work on the 14th of July, I decided to spend a night in one of the spare bedrooms as I could not stand differing with my wife because of her condition. After some time, my wife followed me and poured cold water [on me], which made my bedding and mattress wet. I then decided to join her in our bedroom where she was and I slept,” he narrated.
“In my sleep, I felt sharp objects piercing me on different parts of my body and when I woke up, Mercy was standing right beside me holding a knife and screwdriver and I saw blood all over the bed. Though I was weak, I managed to push and run into our living room where I screamed for help. But before anybody came to my rescue, my wife followed me, this time with a hammer and started hitting me on my face until she broke my teeth.”
Mwansa added that some neighbours came to his rescue and apprehended his wife, who was later taken to Nakonde police.
He has since appealed for justice to prevail in his case.
Mwansa said law enforcers must treat gender-based violence cases involving male victims the same way they treated those involving females.
“But I was surprised to learn the following day that my wife, who almost killed me, had been released. Why are police officers favouring women more than men in reported cases of GBV, when we all have equal rights?” he wondered.
“A similar thing happened with my former wife. She filed for divorce but the courts of law here in Nakonde ordered me to pay her K18 million in instalments. Now they are calling me to settle that bill, now where do I get the money in this state I am in?”
But when contacted, Mercy, who did not deny stubbing her husband, said Mwansa had brought a strange woman in their house whom he claimed was also his wife without her consent.
She said Mwansa lied when he said she was refusing to look after her stepchildren as she had been living with them since moving in the house in February this year.
“What my husband told you is a total lie. The truth is that he brought a woman in my house despite knowing that I am pregnant for him. And ever since that woman came into our house, he has stopped caring for me. He no longer sleeps in our bedroom and when I ask him why he has totally changed his attitude towards me, all I receive from him are insults,” she explained.
“I admit what I did to him on that fateful day was wrong, but he pushed me beyond my limit. I confronted him about his behaviour which had become unbearable for me and before I could finish stating my case to him, he started yelling insults that I could no longer bear.”
Mercy further explained that Mwansa then decided to go back to the other bedroom where he and the other woman had been sleeping without addressing the problem which was depressing her.
“That is how I decided to follow him. When I got into the bedroom, I just poured cold water where he was sleeping and a fight between us erupted. In the process of defending myself, I ended up assorting him to that extent,” she explained.
Meanwhile, Mercy’s mother, Fatima Nkandu, explained that although she did not support her daughter’s actions, Mwansa had ruined her life.
“Mwansa made my daughter stop school in grade nine. He used to lie to her that he never had any children and that he had never married before. There was a time when I realised that my daughter’s health was not good and Mwansa had even bought her strange medicines which she had even started taking. I decided to take her for medical checkups only to discover that my daughter has acquired this incurable disease,” narrated Nkandu. “He has been humiliating my daughter by bringing another woman in the house who has brought her no peace. We are poor people who can’t afford to bribe any police officer but he came here bragging that he would involve police officers from Lusaka because the officers from Nakonde have failed. And I also want to state that my daughter was released from police custody because she developed pain in her stomach because of the pregnancy and we are not running away from the law.”