Woman raped at Covid-19 quarantine facility now in the care of her family
Cape Town - The 20-year-old woman who was raped while recovering at the Mossel Bay Covid-19 isolation facility is in the care of her family and receiving assistance from a social worker.
This as the rape-accused Clinton Joe Hartnick appeared in the Mossel Bay Magistrate’s court yesterday where the case was postponed to next week.
The State has indicated it will oppose bail.
Hartnick, who works for a cleaning company named Procon Facilities Management, was arrested on Friday at the Westcamp Petrosa Quarantine and Isolation Site near Mossel Bay.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said: “His case was postponed to September 21, 2020 for a bail application.
“The State will oppose the bail application.”
Procon Facilities Management director Bernardo Maralack confirmed that their employee was taken into police custody.
“The company will most certainly implement severe disciplinary measures against the employee, who will most likely be dismissed for gross misconduct if convicted of this offence. The employee will almost definitely be dismissed from the company if convicted.
“The company is at this stage not provided with the identity of the alleged victim, and is assured by the Department of Health that they are supporting the alleged victim to the best of their ability,” Maralack said.
Premier Alan Winde said the victim had been offered psycho-social support and was receiving follow-up support from a social worker yesterday.
“She is now in the care of her family,” Winde said.
“The Department of Transport and Public Works is supporting the investigation. I have also requested that a court watching brief be placed on the matter, so that we can track the case’s progress through the justice system.
“This is the first incident of this nature reported to us at any of the quarantine and isolation facilities being operated under the custodianship of the Department of Transport and Public Works.
“Hundreds of people have made use of various quarantine and isolation facilities across the province, which have provided a space for them to recover from Covid19,” Winde said.
Regarding security at isolation facilities, Winde said facility managers appointed both the security and the cleaning firms at the Mossel Bay site.
“Strict security measures have always been in place at the facility.
“No entry or exit is permitted to anyone without prior arrangements and security officers are on patrol 24/7.
“Since the incident, security protocols have been reiterated to all staff,” he said.
Provincial Department of Transport and Public Works Jandre Bakker said a facility manager is appointed to manage functions such as security and cleaning.
“Currently there are six patients in the facility following discharges over the weekend.
“The site has three guards per shift on a 24-hour basis,” said Bakker.