LIMPOPO – The girl, whose name is withheld, at the time stayed with her mother, stepfather, and three siblings at Mailaskop near Vleifontein in Makhado, where they shared one room. There was a time when an arrangement was made for the four siblings to only spend the day at the mother’s place, and at night stay with an elderly woman, a relative, who lived some 100 metres away.
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Meanwhile, the children’s maternal grandmother, from Waterval near Elim, took a taxi to Mailaskop after not hearing from her daughter for a long time.
“The old woman told me that my daughter, the children’s mother, had come to take the girl in the evening to sleep with her in the one room as she was alone and afraid to spend the night alone,” the grandmother said. But the woman said the girl returned the next morning, crying and refusing to say what the problem was.”
The grandma then confronted her daughter, who she said assured her that nothing was wrong. The girl later decided to tell what had happened.
“She told of how the stepfather had raped her in the presence of her mother, at knifepoint. She said the man threatened to kill them should the mother intervene,” the grandmother said.
The grandmother reported a case of sexual child abuse at the Waterval Police Station, where the case was handled by the Makhado Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit (FCS). According to the grandmother, tests a few weeks later confirmed the girl was pregnant and the girl had the pregnancy terminated.
Following the horrific ordeal, the grandmother said she had been given conflicting states of progress on the matter, by the police.
“The investigating officer had initially confirmed to me that the DNA tests had matched those of the arrested stepfather,” she said. The girl and her siblings had in the meantime been moved back to Waterval, where they were enrolled at a local high school.
According to the grandmother, the girl is not doing well.
“She wets her bed at night and experiences nightmares. One day, a child rushed into the house to say my granddaughter was acting strangely. When I went outside, I couldn’t believe my eyes. My granddaughter was screaming, running around frantically, uttering the stepfather’s name and that he had returned to rape her again. She was seeing things which we couldn’t see.”
The event led to the girl being admitted to a mental institution. “Her condition was stabilised and she was given medication,” the grandmother said.
Following her outburst, the girl also had to endure abuse by fellow learners, according to the grandmother. Almost a year later, little has been done in terms of the investigation and the suspect had been released. When the grandmother visited the FCS in May, she was told that the DNA results of the samples extracted from the suspect didn’t match that of the victim.
“My world was shattered, especially since I was first told differently. Somehow, evidence in this case had disappeared. How is it possible for the police to take more than 10 months to receive DNA results? The police are failing us.”
Limpopo Regional Spokesperson for the National Prosecution Authority, Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi, acknowledged receipt of the media inquiry and said she would only release an official comment upon checking the content.
Source: Capricorn Review