Dance teacher raped our daughters

By Drum Digital
01 June 2010

When he moved into the area he was welcomed like Santa Claus on Christmas Day by many members of the  community.

He boasted of having solid entertainment industry credentials, including being a big-time producer for gospel greats such as Malibongwe and Deborah Fraser, and promised the people of Nkanini in Khayelitsha just outside Cape Town that he’d make their children rich and famous.

Mothers in the community were thrilled with his idea: he was going to start a traditional dance group for young girls which would make money not only for the kids but for their parents too.

“He told us, ‘This will keep your child off the streets, away from paedophiles and the evil that lurks out there’,” recalls Luleka Gcina*, the young single mother of an eightyear- old girl.

Several fathers were wary of the man, this stranger they knew nothing about. But he was charming and persuasive and soon after arriving in Nkanini in October last year he had formed the troupe. A group of 30 girls aged between eight and 12 gathered near the man’s house in a street in Nkanini and practised four times a week, occasionally going to a shopping mall to dance for shoppers.

Now it seems the men were right to have doubts about the teacher – and Luleka and other mothers are reeling in shock and disgust.

The man who claimed he’d keep their daughters safe from harm was allegedly abusing them while they were in his care.

The dance teacher, Lawrence Gagu (42), is now facing at least six charges of rape and one of indecent assault.

Read the full article in the Drum of 27 May 2010

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