A ROMAN Catholic trainee priest stationed at Kriste Mambo High School allegedly fondled a female pupil (17) during a church service at the school last week. The priest has since been arraigned before the courts to answer the embarrassing charges. Tatenda Brandon Masenga (23) who is a novice Carmelite brother at the institution who was represented by Mr Tawanda Garai of Chigadza and Associates is alleged to have contravened Section 67 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 9:23, which criminalises indecent assault.
Masenga was not asked to plead when he appeared before provincial magistrate, Mrs Elizabeth Hanzi, who remanded him to March 11 for trial. Prosecutor, Mr Tafara Chawatama told the court that Masenga who was seating behind the Upper Six student during the service fondled her buttocks with his fingers and toes and only stopped after she changed position.
“On February 10 and at Kriste Mambo High School, the complainant was in a church service when Masenga and fellow brothers entered the church. They sat on the bench behind where the complainant was sitting.
“During the course of the service, Masenga lowered his head and started fondling the student’s back. “The complainant upon feeling the movement told a fellow prefect and was told to move forward. Masenga also pushed his hand forward and continued with his act,” he said.
Mr Chawatama added: “The accused person then removed his shoes and started pushing the girl’s behind using his toes. The pupil later moved to the edge of the bench and Masenga stopped his act.
“After the church service, the complainant was accompanied to the matron, Mrs Jasman Medzani by her friend and reported the case. The matron questioned Masenga, but he denied sexually harassing the girl. “A police report was made leading to Masenga’s arrest,” said Mr Chawatama.