A MOTHER who mistreated her five year-old daughter on various occasions this year has been placed on a good behaviour bond.
Principal Magistrate Jim Seuika imposed a 12-month bound over in the sum of $300 for the mother of four, Anna Matakale on Tuesday.
Magistrate Seuika warned the 34-year-old mother that if she commits any offence to her children within the bond period, she will be sent to prison.
He said this sentence should send a clear message to all mothers and parents who treat their children in such way, that they can be sent to prison once convicted.
He added that children have a special place in our society, which is why they are protected by the legislation, regulations and treaties to have laws to look after them.
“Bringing up of children is very important and though they are human beings they are different from adults,” the magistrate told the mother.
He said in this case, the mother said she was trying to discipline her daughter but the way in which she does is beyond what the laws could allow.
Matekale had pleaded guilty to one count of cruelty to children that carries the maximum penalty of five years imprisonment.
The accused had on various occasions this year ill-treated her daughter by using a spade to hit her head and on other occasions used a stick and bamboo to whip her fingers.
On another occasion, she used lit firewood and burned her daughter’s buttocks saying she was trying to get rid of a skin disease.
The court also heard she threw rock and stone at her daughter that landed on her head.
The little girl sustained injuries as a result of this treatment and was cared for by the sisters at the Christian Care Centre after the incidents.
The mother during mitigation last week told the court she wished to have her child back and assured the court she will not repeat such treatment.
The mother was represented by Resly Brook of Public Solicitor’s Office while Police Prosecutor Ethel Mae’ue appeared for the State.
By Assumpta Buchanan