Pretoria – Provincial commissioner of police in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant-General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela has “vehemently condemned” an incident in which two minor children were allegedly kidnapped in Graskop.
The incident took place on Friday, according to Mpumalanga police spokesperson Brigadier Selvy Mohlala.
Three suspects have since been arrested in connection with the kidnapping incident.
“According to the (police) report, on the said day two boys, both aged 15 from two separate families were allegedly locked up at a certain house in Graskop without the approval or knowledge of their parents,” Mohlala said.
“Subsequent to the information reaching the community in the area, a group converged to go to a house where the two kids were suspected to have been kept. Nonetheless, police in the area were not officially informed about the disappearance of the children.”
It is said that the group of people proceeded to the residence of a woman, inquiring on the whereabouts of the children.
“However, the woman reportedly informed them that the children were not available at the time but were rather in Marite near Bushbuckridge. It is further indicated that these members of the community lost patience and reportedly forced their way through, into a hut. They then found the two boys who appeared to have been in unstable state of mind,” Mohlala said.
It is further alleged that children had some visible wounds on their bodies.
“The woman is said to have then been assaulted by the group where she sustained some injuries. Police were alerted about the developments and they swiftly went to the scene to rescue the situation,” Mohlala said.
“The police then apprehended the 49-year-old woman as well as a 17-year-old boy and a 24-year-old man on charges of kidnapping. The woman was taken to hospital for treatment under police guard whilst the other two males were detained.”
The 24-year-old man, Japhet Sekatane has since appeared in the Graskop Magistrate’s Court where he was remanded in custody. His matter was postponed to July 12, for further investigation.
Mohlala said police are working in collaboration with probation officers “as the other arrested suspect is a minor who is also expected to also appear in court soon”.