PRETORIA – Following the spate of abductions reported in different parts of South Africa, human rights NGO Amnesty International has called on the authorities in Pretoria to be transparent about the cases of kidnappings, and to bring the perpetrators to justice.
“It is extremely disturbing that children are targets,” Amnesty International South Africa executive director Shenilla Mohamed said.
On Wednesday, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi expressed “deep concern” about the alleged kidnapping of a Grade 5 female learner, who was seized from the EP Baumann Primary School in Mayfair, Joburg.
It is alleged that the learner was kidnapped at gunpoint by three men who were travelling in a “new shaped Silver/White Toyota Yaris with the registration number JS62CS GP”, according to the provincial education authorities.
The Gauteng department of education has pleaded with any community member who may have additional information pertaining to this incident “or may have made any sighting of the vehicle” to contact the police.
Last week, South Africans woke up to the news that the four Moti brothers, who were kidnapped three weeks ago while on their way to school in Limpopo, had been reunited with their parents, Naazim and Shakira Moti.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Vish Naidoo said officers in Vuwani received a call from a resident on Wednesday night, saying that the children had arrived at their house.
Mohamed said there was little information provided regarding what had happened to the Moti brothers, and how they were released.
“While we are relieved that the four Moti brothers, who were abducted in October, have been returned to their family, there has been very little information on what happened and what led to the children being released.
“It is also important for authorities to be open and transparent about the issue and about who they believe are behind this spate of abductions and what they are doing to prevent further kidnappings,” Mohamed said.
“We understand that authorities cannot give details while they are tracking the perpetrators, but they can reveal the truth in bringing forth justice. The people of South Africa have a right to know what is going on. The authorities must get to the bottom of the kidnappings and bring those involved to justice.”