‘Despicable’ abuse of child probed by social workers


The department of social development confirmed that social workers were compiling a background investigative report for the children’s court inquiry following the abuse of a six-year-old girl allegedly by two relatives and two neighbours in Cacadu.

The Rep reported (Tortured girl, six, fighting for her life, September 10) that three women and a man facing charges of kidnapping and assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm were refused bail in the Lady Frere magistrate’s court last week. It was reported that the child was hospitalised after being severely beaten, tied up and deprived of food.

Provincial spokesperson Mzukisi Solani said social development MEC Siphokazi Lusithi had received, with great shock, a report of the despicable act. “MEC Lusithi instructed social workers to contact the police for immediate action. When officers arrived in the house, they found a young girl tied up and her whole body was swollen with lacerations. The child was urgently taken to hospital for medical attention. Due to swift action by social workers, the community and police, the suspect were apprehended and denied bail.”

Solani indicated that the child has since been discharged from hospital. “The child was removed to a place of safety and caring. The social workers are busy with a background investigative report in line with the provisions of the Children’s Act,” read a statement issued by Solani.

We believe that every child has a right to grow and flourish in a safe environment without the threat of being harmed. It is even contemptible when such harm is visited upon by people who should be providing a first line of defence to a child. We are grateful for the rapid action from our officials, police and community,” said MEC Lusithi.