EERSTERUST residents took to the streets yesterday demanding justice for three girls who were allegedly drugged and raped. Picture: Rudzani Matshili
Pretoria - Residents of Eersterust yesterday took to the streets to demand justice for three young schoolgirls - two of them minors - who were allegedly drugged and sexually violated by known perpetrators.

The residents, including young children, braved the wet weather and marched to the local police station to hand over a memorandum in which they demanded the perpetrators to be brought to book.

They held placards with messages such as “innocent until drugged and raped” and “no means no” during the peaceful walk.

According to community activist Virginia Keppler, the two friends accompanied an older girl and her boyfriend to a restaurant last Monday.

Later in the afternoon, they were dropped off in the area in a state “their parents have never seen before”. It is suspected they had been drugged.

“This is the latest in a long list of such incidents where women and children suffered violence, abuse and humiliation at the hands of known perpetrators.

“Public outrage has been steadily growing about these kinds of incidents and a host of other matters which have stretched our patience to the limit.

“These matters include high levels of unemployment, poverty and crime which have turned our beloved Eesterust into an impoverished haven for drug dealers and gangsters who seem to operate with impunity,” she said.

The residents also demanded that the commander of Eersterust Police Station be removed. They said they had no trust in the police station management.

They also want the community healthcare centre to be upgraded to a 24-hour health care facility.

Residents also demanded that President Cyril Ramaphosa visit their community to address these issues no later than December 21.

Police said their investigations were still under way, and two cases had been opened. They added more evidence was needed in order to make arrests.

Tshwane North SAPS cluster commander Major-General Hilda Mohajane accepted their memorandum and promised to deliver it to provincial commissioner Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela.

She asked the community to assist in reporting criminal activities and drug dealing in the area, to which they responded that police already knew who the criminals were and were working with them.

Pretoria News