Africa

Uganda maid Jolly Tumuhiirwe guilty of assaulting toddler

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Media captionJolly Tumuhiirwe asked for forgiveness in court on Monday

A maid in Uganda who was secretly filmed beating a little girl has been found guilty of assaulting the toddler.

Jolly Tumuhiirwe, 22, told the court she had been driven to attack the 18-month-old because the child's mother had beaten her - something the mother denied.

A video of the assault caused outrage when it was posted online.

Earlier charges of torture were dropped after prosecutors said they could not be easily proven.

Tumuhiirwe now faces up five years in jail for committing assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

She is due to be sentenced on Monday.

Hidden camera

The abuse came to light when the child's father, Eric Kamanzi, installed a camera in his home after noticing his daughter was bruised and limping.

The graphic footage, taken from a camera hidden in the corner of the living room, shows Tumuhiirwe hitting the child when she resists feeding and then throwing her to the floor, beating her with a torch before stepping on her and kicking her.

Image copyright Ruth Alexander-NBH
Image caption The child's father, Eric Kamanzi, had installed a secret camera in the living room to capture the abuse
Image caption Mr Kamanzi became emotional when Tumuhirwe said she was sorry on Monday

The footage of the abuse has been seen or shared thousands of times on social media.

Leaving the court on Friday, the child's mother, Angella Mbabazi, told the BBC's Catherine Byaruhanga in Kampala that she had not beaten the maid.

She said would not have been able to leave her daughter in her care if that was true.

On Monday, Tumuhiirwe asked the court, the parents and Ugandans to forgive her.

Mr Kamanzi broke down in tears when the maid offered her apology.

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