Elderly woman assaulted over land dispute

Offenses arising out of land disputes is frequent in our villages where close relatives become enemies, says a National Court judge.

It is a source of disharmony and people should take the matter up with local authorities. Justice Panuel Mogish recently made the remarks after a Rigo man attacked an old woman.

Justice Mogish told Rawali Geno that elderly people must be treated with respect and attacking a defenseless and vulnerable woman was uncalled for, even though she uprooted plants on a disputed land.

“This woman is related to you. I would strongly urge parties to solve the land dispute before someone is killed and seriously injured.

“Pending a decision, parties should refrain from doing anything to the land that will provoke the other party to react,” he added.

Justice Mogish made the remarks when issuing orders to Kamali man, Geno, to pay compensation of K350 or face jail time of 3 years for assault.

Geno was ordered by the Bomana National Court to pay K100 to Rupa Tau, an elderly woman he is related to, after he assaulted her on Oct 30, 2015, by striking her right wrist with a branch.  

Geno was also ordered to pay K250 to Joe Vali Tau, one of Rupa Tau’s children, after he cut off his right hand with a spade.

Justice Mogish gave Geno till December 9 to pay the fine. His bail of K250 will be converted to part of the compensation.

The balance of K100 must be paid into the National Court Trust Account. The payment will be reviewed on Dec 9.

The court found Geno cut off Joe’s hand after Rupa’s children went to the village and attacked him following the news of their elderly mother’s assault.

“Both victims were taken to the rural aid post and treated,” Justice Mogish told the court.

“I do not know the extent of Rupa Tau’s injury. The medical report states she was referred for further medical treatment.

“The outcome of that report is not on file. Suffice to say, the photograph shows she suffered some serious injury to her wrist. Joe Vali Tau had his right hand stitched.”

Justice Mogish said in both cases, Geno used dangerous items to assault the victims. In the first assault, he used the branch of a tree to assault an elderly woman on her right wrist.

Sally Pokiton