The mother convicted of abusing and killing her daughter, Baby X, maintains her innocence. Picture: Nadia Khan
Durban - WHILE Baby X’s mother awaits her sentence on Thursday for the murder of her 3-year-old child in 2014, allegations have emerged that her other daughter had been molested at a place of safety.

During arguments in sentencing last week, Judge Mohini Moodley quizzed social worker Mahashni Naidoo about the allegations.

She called for a full report on Naidoo’s findings into the molestation claims.

Moodley said she had made numerous enquiries but the “doors were being shut” on her. She questioned how this had been allowed to happen to the 12-year-old.

KZN Department of Social Development spokesperson Ncumisa Ndelu said one of the boys at the place of safety had acted inappropriately, and this had been witnessed by three girls.

He has since been removed from the place of safety.

A spokesperson at the place of safety said Baby X’s siblings were doing well. He said all efforts were being made to raise them as responsible adults, despite the significant trauma they had faced.

The convicted mother, 34, who spoke briefly to POST on Thursday, said she was innocent and prayed for strength in prison.

Baby X died on November 20, 2014, due to blunt force trauma to the head and brutal child abuse.

“I pray to God and ask him to help me. I did not kill my child. I am innocent.”

She said she was sorry and that she missed her children. The woman’s name is not being revealed to protect the identities of her three surviving minor children.

In September, she was found guilty of three counts of child abuse, a count of ­assault GBH and failure to provide medical assistance, as well as murder.

She was also found guilty of two counts of child abuse, failure to provide medical assistance and assault GBH for her then 11-year-old son, and child abuse of her then 8-year-old daughter. Her other daughter, who was 2 at the time, was spared the abuse.

The mother’s co-accused - the children’s grandmother - who had also been standing trial, died in prison in April.

During the trial, it emerged that Baby X had been burnt with cigarettes on her private area and other parts of her body, had been battered, had chilli powder placed in her nappy, had been bound with rope and denied food. Two days before her death, according to evidence given by her brother, the grandmother had throttled her before repeatedly throwing her to the ground. On the following day, the mother had assaulted her with a high-heeled shoe.

Baby X’s siblings were told to mop the blood from the kitchen floor afterwards. That same night, Baby X was bound by her hand and legs to the bed with rope, and a plastic packet put over her head. She was declared dead the next day.

During arguments in sentencing, the State called community activist Brandon Pillay to explain the impact of the child’s death on the community.

“It was shocking. We (community) could not fathom what was happening how a child could be killed at the hand of someone supposed to take care of them.

“The community was shocked and enraged that the child’s innocence was taken away,” he said.

Pillay, who was instrumental in organising Baby X’s funeral, told the court that more than 2000 people had attended.

Judge Moodley questioned if Pillay had known about the other children and that the boy had reported the abuse to family members, teachers and social workers who visited the house but found nothing wrong. Pillay responded that society had failed the children.

During arguments, defence advocate Murray Pitman called for a maximum sentence of 10 years.

Senior state advocate Sheryl Naidu called for a 25-year jail term.