Zephany had a feeling that we were her blood – granny

2016-03-10 16:42

Cape Town  It was divine intervention that Morne Nurse sent his daughter to a school in Retreat where two days into the term she would meet and befriend her missing biological sister, said Zephany Nurse's paternal grandmother.

Zephra Nurse said she had initially told her son not to enrol his daughter at the school, but he insisted.

"God put it to him [that he should]," the grandmother said after a 51-year-old woman was convicted for kidnapping, fraud and contravening the Children’s Act.

"Because if she didn’t go to that school in that year, [they would never have found her]. God’s time is the right time."

Cassidy Nurse met the girl when she started Grade 8 last year.

She told her father that pupils at the school had commented on how much she resembled the matriculant, and Morne started a month-long investigation of his own before taking his information to the Hawks.

After collecting his daughter Cassidy and the then 17-year-old from the high school in January last year, he took the two friends to lunch.

He testified that he had asked the girl her date of birth and she had replied April 30, 1997. This was the date his daughter was abducted.

'That is how blood works'

She told him she didn’t look like her parents, and when he asked her why she looked like him and his family, the girl laughed, saying she didn’t know why.

He said he backed off as he did not want to scare her, but "scrutinised" her Facebook account and printed photos of her as she had grown up.

Nurse then sent a photo of the girl and her mother to a witness who saw the suspected abductor on the day Zephany was snatched from her sleeping mother.

The woman recognised the kidnapper. DNA tests later confirmed the teenager was indeed their daughter.

Zephra Nurse said Zephany had told Cassidy that she "got a feeling inside her that this is her blood".

"That is how blood works. This is how DNA works," she said.

In an interview with News24 before the verdict was handed down, the accused said the 17 years and 10 months spent raising the child were the happiest of her life.

Her husband, who also cannot be named as it could lead to the teen’s current identity being revealed, said Zephany  who he still refers to as his daughter – considered the accused her mother.

She is living with him at their Lavender Hill home.

'She knows we are there for her'

The accused maintained she did not steal the infant and that the child was handed to her 19 years ago by a woman who was helping with her infertility problems and who told her that the baby’s biological mother did not want her.

On Thursday, the accused's husband said Zephany had told him to wish his wife luck and give her a kiss.

Both said they want the child’s biological parents to be part of her life.

"I have encouraged her to build a relationship with them. They are her birth parents. We don’t want to stand in the way of that," he said.

But Zephra Nurse said the family wouldn’t force Zephany into a relationship with them.

"She knows we are there for her. She must just come.

"She grew up in a different land. She must rid herself of that foreign land. We are waiting. Patiently, we are waiting, because we are her biological family."

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