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Sunday, December 30, 2007                                                                                       View Comments

African pastor fathers child with daughter

The girl who was allegedly raped and impregnated by her own father dreams of going back to school and would like to see her daddy punished.

Lucia (real name withheld), 17, says she was raped by her father, Herbert Bugembe of Mutungo, in Kenya last year. She delivered a baby boy on June 17 but her father has reneged on his written commitment to provide for both children. (See, 'Pastor rapes, impregnates his daughter'; The Weekly Observer, December 20-26).

In an interview last week, Bugembe denied the accusations. He charged that her daughter was being used by rival pastors happy to bring him down.

But The Weekly Observer has seen documents Bugembe signed admitting to being the father of her daughter's child. The matter was reported to CID headquarters in Kampala but the Police had taken no action by press time.

Speaking from her mother's home in Kayunga, Lucia said she was still struggling to reconcile with the man she first met as a father and the man who she says, later destroyed her future.

"I want him to be jailed because what he did to me was so bad...," she said of her father, a preacher with the now defunct Great Commission Christian Centre. "I am here suffering. He really destroyed my life. Yet he was the same person who used to tell me to take care of myself."

She said she would like to go back to school, or do a vocational course that can enable her earn a living.

If she had remained in school, Lucia said last week, she would now be in Senior Four. Breaking down in tears, Lucia reported how men in the neighbourhood taunted her about the fact that her father raped her and even fathered a child with her.

"I need help from God. My mother has many children and I do not want to be a burden to her. At least I wish God would help me master hair braiding so that I can support myself."

At Kayunga, Lucia lives in a rented room with her half-sisters, just next to another room occupied by her mother, tep father and the younger siblings. Her mother, a casual hair braider, says she is all Lucia has.

Lucia's step father, a boda boda motorcyclist, said he was shocked to learn what happened to the girl and advised to stay and share whatever little he can make for the family.

Her mother, Joyce, said: "Her education was on and off and yet she was a bright child". She shared her daughter's worry that the girl had become family-less, given that she would no longer fit in her father's family.

Lucia studied up to P.4 when she lived with her aunt at Nsambya. She then went to live with her father in Mutungo but that was when her father started showing his preying instincts and she never proceeded to P.6.

In 2006, her father paid fees at a vocational school in Kayunga but for only one term.