Malawi clinician who raped unconcius patient jailed for 8 years

Hope Chipwatali 36, a clinical officer at Mzuzu Central Hospital who was convicted on charges that he sexually assaulted a patient after he sedated her,  has been jailed for eight years.

Prosecution led by Jacob Montfort Nambiri proved that Chiphwatali of Chimbia Village Traditional Authority Kaphuka in Dedza district, took advantage of the patient’s mental illness and raped her.

The victim [name protected] was brought to the referral hospital on 20th January 2013 because of mental health problems following a prolonged altercation with her husband in South Africa.

Chief Resident Magistrate Joseph Chigona described the attack as a despicable act.justice

Repeat offendor

This is not the first time for Chipwatali to be involved in abusing patients. In 2005,  while working as a clinician at Blantyre’s main Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, was caught with his private parts exposed, while attending to a female patient whom he had anaesthetised.

Another female patient also complained that she was raped by a medical worker while she was under anaesthesia.  During a parade of suspects, the patient identified Chipwatali as the offender and some nurses corroborated her story.

The case was referred to the Medical Council of Malawi but he was acquitted on technical grounds.

Chipwatali was, however, severely reprimanded with recommendations that he be moved to another department of the same hospital.

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