Family of tortured 9-year-old boy says he is still traumatised

The child suffered several minutes of torture. Picture: Screenshot

The child suffered several minutes of torture. Picture: Screenshot

Published Feb 10, 2024


Cape Town - The family of the 9-year-old whose brutal torture was captured on video have broken their silence.

His mom, 24, who can’t be named to protect the identity of the child, said he has been taken to get psychological help.

The boy was accused of stealing R600 then tied up and electrocuted before being placed head-first in a wheelie bin and doused with water.

The incident happened on January 27 and of more than five people present during the torture, only three were arrested for assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

Justin Limco, 21, Nathan Niewenhuis, 24, and Zane Marthinus, 34, appeared in court on Tuesday and their case was postponed to February 27 for formal bail application.

“My son was left very traumatised. He was a playful child but now he has become withdrawn.

“I was alerted to the video and I couldn’t believe what happened to my child.

“After he was almost killed, he ran to his grandmother’s house, which is close to where the incident happened.

“I took him away from there, he is not doing well.

“I expected him to have nightmares. I am watching him closely in case he starts having episodes. I know this has damaged him mentally.”

Police Oversight and Community Safety MEC Reagen Allen said he was appalled by the video making the rounds on social media.

“This is clearly highly traumatic and I am aware that our sister department, Social Development, is attending to the boy. No child deserves this. The second quarter crime statistics, July 2023 to September 2023, show that 334 children were victims of grievous bodily harm (GBH).”

Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez was also made aware of the incident when the video was shared.

“A social worker from the department immediately set out to find the child and investigate.

“The social worker has been in contact with the child’s family to discuss options for psychosocial support, such as counselling.

“The incident took place in January 2024. I was shocked and deeply disturbed upon learning of the video.

“I strongly condemn the gruesome assault we saw being inflicted on a young child. The alleged perpetrators have been caught and are in police custody. We will now leave it to the justice system to run its course.

“One of the department’s main priorities is the well-being and protection of children, thus a social worker will ensure the child gets the necessary support he requires.”

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Cape Argus