Grandchild’s rape ‘the worst thing that ever happened to me’

2012-07-31 15:40

The rape of her grandchild was the worst thing that had ever happened to her, a Durban grandmother told the Scottsburgh Regional Court.

The rape case involving her 7-year-old grandson from Mgababa, Durban, was postponed today for further investigation.

In her testimony, the child’s grandmother said the boy was her deceased son’s child. The boy’s mother abandoned the child and left her and her husband to raise him.

She described the rape as worst thing that has ever happened to her. The woman told the court that she only found out about what had happened when she tried to bath the child.

The child had been groaning, unable to sleep the night before. He vomited but she thought the boy was getting flue.

When she asked him why he couldn’t sit, he whispered to her what had happened to him, afraid that his alleged rapist would hear since he had threatened to kill him if he told anyone.

Lindile Nkotheba (19) has been charged with the alleged rape of the boy, who was 5 years old at the time.

The matter went to trial on Friday following the intervention of First Lady Tobeka Madiba-Zuma.

The case has been well attended and has been supported by the ANC’s Women’s League and various non-governmental organisation who advocate against the abuse of women and children.

Since Friday, when the child started giving his testimony through an intermediary, the mood at court has been emotionally charged.

This was especially true today because many felt the defence’s line of questioning was out of order.

Despite only journalists and certain members of Madiba-Zuma’s foundation being allowed to sit in court for the in-camera testimony, people continued to flock to the court building. Many latecomers stood or sat on the floor.

Some covered their faces and groaned in disapproval when the child was forced to give a detailed account of the alleged rape, while others cried.

Speaking to City Press after the child’s testimony, a family member of the accused, Samuel Mhlongo said he still loved “both boys as my own”. He said the accused was his wife’s brother’s child.

Nkotheba’s parents sent him to them to get a better eduction.

However, the accused has since moved back to Lusikisiki in the Eastern Cape.

He only sleeps over the night before the case is in court so he can keep time.

“I can’t say much because I was not there. But he (Nkotheba) maintains he doesn’t know anything about this. We will have to wait for the court to decide,” he said.

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