Young man physically assaulting grandmother has been arrested

Published Jul 4, 2024


A 19-year-old suspect who is seen in a video assaulting an elderly woman in her house has been arrested, Western Cape SAPS confirmed on Thursday.

“The suspect was traced to Wallecedene in Kraaifontein on Wednesday evening. He is expected to appear before the Blue Downs Magistrate's Court on a charge of assault,” said national police spokesperson Brigadier Athlenda Mathe.

The video currently trending on social media platforms shows a young man, purported to be the grandson of the elderly woman, physically assaulting her to a point where she is seen on her knees.

After the first slap, a pot with food fell down as the gogo crashed on the floor. As she tried to stand up, she shouted “Luvo”, he shouted back at her aggressively. She further asked “undibulalelani Luvo” (loosely translated as why are you killing me Luvo).

The grandson further intimidated her by pointing his finger, telling the gogo that he was going to beat her up. The gogo replied “beat and kill me… isn’t it you were sent to kill me. You are killing me in my own house.”

The rude man continued threatening to beat her up. It is unknown who recorded the video but it is suspected it could be a female relative who felt helpless.

It is alleged that this is not an isolated incident but a recurring situation in that household. Reports suggest that after the social grants are paid out, the grandson steals the elderly woman’s social grant and continues to abuse her.

The incident took place at Kraaifontein, Western Cape.

ATM President Vuyo Zungula has written to the Minister of Social Development and Minister of Women, Children & People with Disabilities to seek urgent action.

“I hope this letter finds you in good health and high spirits. I write to bring to your immediate attention a deeply distressing and urgent matter concerning the safety and well-being of an elderly woman. This case requires your prompt and decisive intervention,” wrote Zungula.

He said this situation is profoundly alarming and highlights a grave failure in societal protections for the most vulnerable members of community.

“The ATM implores your offices to prioritise this matter despite the recent changes and appointments within your ministries. Social issues of this magnitude cannot be postponed, and immediate action is imperative.

“We respectfully seek your urgent assistance and intervention to ensure the safety of this elderly woman and to address the systemic issues that have allowed this abuse to persist,” Zungula said

He said the following actions are requested: “Immediate Protection Support for the victim, ensure that the elderly woman receives immediate physical and psychological care and is placed in a safe environment away from her abuser.

“Investigation and Legal Action: conduct a thorough investigation into the allegations and take appropriate legal action against the perpetrator to prevent further abuse.

“Review and Strengthening of Social Grant Safeguards: Implement measures to protect social grant beneficiaries from exploitation and abuse by family members or others.”

Zungula said they understand that the current transitional period poses challenges, but the urgency and gravity of this situation demand immediate attention.

“We trust in your commitment to protecting the rights and welfare of women, children, and people living with disabilities, and we are confident that you will act swiftly to address this critical issue. Thank you for your attention to this urgent matter. We look forward to your prompt response and decisive action,” Zungula concluded..

The Minister of Social Development Sisisi Tolashe has expressed shock and dismay at the video.

Tolashe has asked officials of the department to follow up on the information at their disposal to make sure that there is justice for the older person.

Tolashe called on the law enforcement agencies to act swiftly on the information in the public domain so that the elderly woman can be protected.

The department said the is an increase in the number of older persons who are abused despite government’s efforts to strengthen key guiding legislation and related frameworks.

The department said continued abuse of the elderly calls for urgent measures aimed at addressing and curbing this ongoing conduct.

“The acknowledgement of the role and contribution made by older persons to society cannot be overemphasised. They deserve good care and support from their families, communities, the state, civil society and private organisations.

“Sadly, this incident happens on the heels of June 15 when South Africa joined the citizens of the world and participated in commemorating of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day which aims to raise awareness about the abuse, neglect, and exploitation of older persons whilst promoting the respect and dignity for this population. Elder abuse is a serious problem that affects millions of older persons.“

The minister is urging members of the public to continue to speak out when abuse of older persons is suspected or happens.

She appealed to citizens to educate themselves about the plight and rights of older persons who are vulnerable by virtue of being old.

“We need to join hands as families, communities and society broadly, in ensuring older persons are protected which should lead to a societal culture of improved reporting and culminate into successful prosecution and safety of older persons,” said Tolashe.

She urged all communities to prioritise the safety and well-being of older persons.

Western Cape SAPS are aware of this matter. They added that this incident happened a month ago.

A comment will follow soon.

The Star