Decades old child rape case back in court

Miranda Jordan CEO and Founder of Woman and Men Against Child Abuse. Picture: Dimpho Maja/African News Agency(ANA)

Miranda Jordan CEO and Founder of Woman and Men Against Child Abuse. Picture: Dimpho Maja/African News Agency(ANA)

Published Feb 5, 2024


Advocacy group, Women and Men Against Child Abuse (WMACA) is happy that the case of two siblings who were abused as children which has been dragging for over two decades, is returning to court.

Their uncle allegedly repeatedly sexually abused both the male and female siblings from the time they were young.

The female victim accused her uncle (who was also a minor when the abuse started) of raping and molesting her and her brother more than 30 years ago. She claimed that she told her mother and grandmother about the abuse but was ordered by the grandmother and aunt to keep matter under wraps.

According to the WMACA, the case which was almost struck off the roll is set to return to the Roodepoort Magistrates Court where the matter will be heard following the first complainant’s eventual success in opening a case against her uncle in 2021.

In statement, Miranda Jordan, founder of the WMACA, said the matter was briefly heard in a brief appearance before the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court in August 2023.

However, the matter was once again postponed for the outcome of representations by the accused, whose bid to have the case struck off the roll was finally denied.

“The decision of the DPP was that he has a case to answer, and will therefore have to stand trial on January 31, 2024,” said Jordan

She said the female victim, now 43 years old, was allegedly raped by her maternal uncle when she was five years old and only came forward with the allegations when she was 14. The accused allegedly sexually abused the first victim’s older brother as well.

Jordan said that the offender was arrested in January 2022 but was released on R30000 bail, and the two victims had obtained a protection orders against the accused who was warned not to contact or come close to them.

She welcomed the fact that the perpetrator would at last be held accountable for his actions after more than three decades of being protected by the system.

“WMACA is very pleased that the accused’s representations were unsuccessful and that the complainants will have an opportunity to put their case before the court,” she said.

Jordan said the delays in the case had been due to tactics by the accused who used multiple representations as a way to evade justice.

“WMACA has noted that this tactic of multiple representations to various levels of the NPA has become commonplace in criminal cases. While these representations are a right of the accused, they are causing massive delays in our cases, which is a known defence strategy.

Jordan added, “Historical child abuse cases deserve to be treated with the same urgency and sensitivity as current cases. We trust that now that he needs to stand trial for the alleged historical abuse, this case will proceed smoothly through the remainder of the criminal justice system and that these adult victims of childhood sexual abuse by family members will get the justice they deserve.”

Saturday Star

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