Mpumalanga police boss slams 'father figures' who allegedly raped toddler, teens
Pretoria – Mpumalanga provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Mondli Zuma on Tuesday condemned the numerous incidents of sexual exploitation and rape of young girls in the province by their fathers.
“In an incident that occured at Kabokweni (a town in Ehlanzeni district municipality) yesterday morning, a one year and eight months' toddler was raped, allegedly by her 35-year-old biological father.
"The matter was immediately reported to the police, who swiftly arrested the man,” Mpumalanga SAPS provincial spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi said.
“He is expected to appear at the Kabokweni Magistrate's Court tomorrow on a charge of rape. At this stage, the matter is still under intense investigation and not much can be divulged.”
In another incident, Hlati said, a 13-year-old girl was allegedly abused by her stepfather.
“A 13-year-old girl was allegedly raped by her 36-year-old stepfather yesterday (Monday) evening at Schoemansdal. Reports indicate that the girl complained that she was not feeling well and she was taken to a local clinic where upon medical examination, it was confirmed that she had been raped,” Hlathi said.
“The matter was reported to the police and a case of rape was opened. Police started with the investigation, where they swiftly arrested the suspect on the same day the matter was reported.”
The 36-year-old stepfather is expected to appear before the Tonga Magistrate's Court on Wednesday facing charges of rape.
In another incident, which occurred at Bushbuckridge between March and June 2020, Hlathi said a 13-year-old girl became a victim of statutory rape involving a 35-year-old man with whom she was apparently in a relationship.
“Information revealed that the girl's mother tried several times to fetch her daughter from the man's house but she'd always go back. The matter was reported to the police following the mother's several attempts to get her daughter back,” Hlathi said.
“A case of statutory rape was opened and preliminary investigations have since revealed that the man had been living with the girl at Health Centre Trust near Bushbuckridge since March 2020.
"The suspect was arrested today, 23 June 2020, and is expected to appear at the Bushbuckridge Magistrate's Court tomorrow.”
Zuma said he was disappointed, adding that the men were supposed to play a father-figure role to the young girls but instead took advantage and violated them.
“Everyone is encouraged to take a stand against the plight of children, hence we will do everything in our power to make sure that all these suspects face the full might of the law.
"We urge the investigation team, the prosecution team, as well as the judiciary to ensure that justice is served in these cases involving the young girls whose future has been crushed by these suspects,” Zuma said.
African News Agency (ANA)