Luke Powell, the father of the Chengelo victim beaten by his dormitory mates has forgiven the perpetrators and pleaded that everyone else should forgive them unconditionally.
Luke Powell, the father of Gawen Powell, says the family does not wish to pursue criminal matters against the perpetrators. Luke, who is the proprietor of Lusanto Farms of Mungwi, near Kasama in Northern Province, said the boys who attacked his son are just kids and the best way to defeat the evil they committed is by showing them God’s love which that God’s LOVE triumphs over evil, by showing these boys love and not rejection.
In an email to Chengelo school, Luke commended the school for their actions but said he did not think expulsion would be a solution. He pleaded with the board to reverse the expulsion and stated that the boys are probably suicidal so the best way to handle them was to temper justice with mercy
Luke’s email read:
Message sent to Chengelo Principle and Chief Inspector ZP HQ Lsk.
From: Luke Powell [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: 10 October 2017 10:41
Subject: RE: Update from Chengelo School
Dear Mr Cowling,
The underlying ethos I have taken away from all the Chengelo school presentations that I have attended, is how well rounded students become by attending Chengelo ; where they live in a caring family environment based on God’s fundamental principles.
I commend the school for acknowledging students who exhibited personal sacrifice and are always ready to help others. ALL the boys in the dorm during Gawen’s assault are just KIDS who ONLY have a FEW more years left where they can be guided and shown that God’s LOVE defeats all evil, no matter how IMPOSSIBLE the situation may seem.
This is THE opportunity for Chengelo to show Zambia (social media) that God’s LOVE triumphs over evil, by showing these boys love and not rejection. We need to be extremely careful and aware of the possibility of KIDS feeling ‘overwhelmed’ and committing suicide.
The board’s decision to expel the two students assaulting Gawen does not come as a surprise considering the many pressures that are demanding this action to be taken.
I do NOT believe this is the correct (long term) solution for ALL concerned as clearly, expulsion did not help the children in the past since expulsion does not demand having to face the consequences nor be accountable for their actions. We implore the board to reverse its decision to expel the boys so that the all can be accountable, be given care, counseling and God’s love.
This is the time to show FAITH that God will protect the school against ALL obstacles and not bow down to earthly pressures based on a punishment that does not show LOVE and compassion.
Gawen needs closure with Jabu and Mwila which may not be possible should their expulsion from school go ahead – with this in mind, I have invited Jabulani and Mwila to come with their respective fathers to spend a few days with Gawen and his father (myself), to be alone away from external influences to spend time being human in each other’s company to appreciate each other in God eyes.
My paramount desire is for the all the boys concerned to come away having learnt the POWER of LOVE. I feel this can only be shown by Chengelo school reversing its decision to exclude Mwila and Jabulani, by taking the FIRST step along a VERY hard and contentious road – let us have FAITH in GOD and ALL will learn the POWER of God’s LOVE.
Yours humbly, Luke Powell(Gawen’s father)
Cc CIO Mulenga Police HQ Lsk From: Chengelo School
One of the bullies who has been expelled, Jabulani Nhliziyo apologized in a message posted on the school’s Facebook page.
He wrote: “It is with utmost remorse that I am writing to apologise for my actions in the video that has been circulating on social media. I am sending my apologies to my friend Gawen Powell, I am sorry for acting out of control, I hope you find it within your heart to forgive me. I am terribly sorry to my parents, family, school, fellow students, friends and everyone who has seen the video and has been coerced into debates alike. I have no right to cause physical pain to another person, what happened with my friend was a disgrace, an act of stupidity which I deeply regret. For those of you who may know me and have grown up with me, you know that I’m not this type of person and I certainly do not have the type of mind-set to do what I did. I have been brought up with values of love and respect which I intend to uphold at all times.
“I am truly sorry for the actions that I had taken and sorry to my fellow students and every other school in Zambia for seeing such a horrible act. All I am asking for is your help in this very hard time when everyone seems to be against me. I have taken a step to seek professional counselling as part of my healing. It is also my hope and prayer that my friends and others who have directly or indirectly experienced trauma from this incidence seek counseling.
“In the next weeks and months, I will be spending most of my time with my psychotherapist, my family and friends. During this period I will be seeking help in every way possible. I believe God’s grace through Jesus Christ will be my source of strength.”