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The day women shoplifted

Torn Apart with Boyd Phiri
HOW often do you read news about a woman being caught on camera shoplifting? Very rare. Probably you always think that men are the only ones who find themselves in such situations.
Of course, when you think about women in the hood, you think about harmless beings – always doing something right – like selling tomatoes by the roadside to eke out a living. Well, that’s about it.
Society views women as saints because they carry the mother figure stature where they go.
That is why even girls are called ‘mummy’ by society because of their potential to become women and child bearers.
Biblically, the man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favour from the LORD (Proverbs 18:22).
But after reading a story about four women who were caught on camera stealing goods worth K34,230 and €180 cash from an Irish national at Fig Tree Cafe in Kabwe, you will have a different opinion about some women in the hood.
According to the story in yesterday’s Daily Mail, two of the women have been arrested by police. Oddly enough, one of the four women captured on CCTV shoplifting is pregnant.
I find this especially interesting. It makes the quartet seem as if they are hardworking mothers. Of course, most mothers are hardworking – always trying to find something for the children to eat, but certainly not through shoplifting.
Despite the pregnant woman’s ordeal, one thing is for sure, she will have no problem naming her child – Arrested Phiri would do. If
her hubby is Mubanga, the child would be called Arrested Mubanga or better still CCTV Mutale.
If she is going to have twins, one would be named Docket (list of cases for trial) and the other one Arrested. What a nice way to remember her ordeal?
If Docket and Arrested seem like weird names, she might try Handcuff and Kasalanga – a name given to the police truck which ferries inmates to courts from remand prisons.
I hope her child won’t grow up into a trouble-maker and grab newspaper headlines like ‘Arrested Phiri arrested’ or better still ‘Police nab Docket Phiri’.
Parents have a lot of freedom in choosing names for their babies, and misfortunes provide a lot of ideas for names. If you don’t believe me, wait until you come across one called Malilo, which means ‘funeral’ in Nyanja.
Perhaps the pregnant thief would be better off giving her child a name which sounds like a title, for example, Constable. At least it sounds normal to remind her of the day a police officer opened a docket for her at Kasanda Police Station in Kabwe and locked her up in a cell.
According to the report, CCTV footage shows the pregnant woman concealing some items in her clothes.
But her child shouldn’t complain if his friends at school start teasing him by telling him to open a docket for them.
Well, I don’t mean to turn this into a humour column about weird names, but I am sure you now understand the whole story.
It’s not as if the women wanted to take selfies while stuffing goods in their bags in a store or snatch roles in a movie called Desperate Housewives; the thing is, they didn’t realise that their shoplifting escapade was being captured on CCTV cameras.
The Bembas say ‘ubushiku usheme ne chimbala chilocha’, meaning ‘When it’s not your day, things do not go in your favour’.
Obviously, things did not go in the women’s favour. I mean, how did they expect things to be in their favour when they were doing wrong things?
You see, when four women are tired of stealing bondwe (wild vegetable) in their neighbours’ backyard gardens in the hood, they decide to take their thievery to a higher level.
As you have probably heard, the two women arrested are part of a four-member gang on police wanted list for various cases of theft.
Central Province police commissioner Lombe Kamukoshi said recently that the two women arrested were last Tuesday intercepted at Kabwe Furniture City, where they allegedly attempted to steal television sets. The other two suspects are on the run.
Anyway, I just want you to know that there are some women out there who are as dangerous as some men you know in the hood.
Not everyone who shoplifts is a simple thief.
But the point is, whether it involves women or men, stealing is bad.