Father, locals wanter faster case

2017-04-11 06:00
Lavender Hill residents and concerned community members gathered at the Wynberg court to oppose bail for the man accused of killing 13-year-old Rene Roman.PHOTO: tiyese JERANJI

Lavender Hill residents and concerned community members gathered at the Wynberg court to oppose bail for the man accused of killing 13-year-old Rene Roman.PHOTO: tiyese JERANJI

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“What he took from me I will never get back again, money won’t even make it right, nothing. I will always be broken ­forever.”

These were the words of a heartbroken father, Eugene Jacobs, whose daughter Rene Tracy Roman (13) was allegedly raped and killed. Her half-naked body was found on 21 March after she went missing the previous week. Jacobs was holding back tears as he spoke to the media about how the death of his eldest child has affected him.

“What I like for people to hear now is, I will make a way to get to him and I will kill him because this is taking too long. He already confessed to what he did, so couldn’t they finish it today?”

Jacobs said he was disappointed by another postponement of the case.

The accused, Andrew Plaatjies (50), made a brief appearance before Magistrate Goolam Bowa at Wynberg Magistrate’s Court last Tuesday. He is facing charges of murder and attempted rape.

A close family friend, who spoke on condition that she remains anonymous, says the justice system is failing them.

“Our innocent child was placed all over the papers but he can’t be placed on all over. The court is protecting him. The community is broken; I don’t even have the words to describe how we feel. She has no future anymore, she wasn’t even given a chance to finish her matric. Why did she have to die this way?” she asks.

Though she wasn’t so happy about the postponement either, she says the case comes as a relief. “At least for now we are sure that he is in jail where he belongs. We don’t want him to get bail. We will be here again and we want the court to take away his right to live because he took away our child,” she says.

Lavender Hill residents and other people gathered outside court where they sang and chanted that Plaatjies must be denied bail.

Leading the crowd was Lucinda Evans, founder of Philisa Abafazi Bethu, who said at the gathering they were not prepared to keep coming to court for two years.

“We are calling on the justice department to fast-track this case. The case must be done in three months. He must rot in jail, we don’t want him out. If he comes out the community will kill him.”

Evans has also started a letter-writing campaign to voice opposition to bail and to ask the court to fast-track the case. “In the letter we are saying we don’t want anything less than two life sentences and he must not get parole. I’m hopeful that everyone touched by this issue will submit a letter.”

V Anyone who wants to contribute a letter can email admin@philisaabafazi.org or drop one at the Philisa Abafazi Bethu offices at the Cafda family centre, corner of 8th Avenue and Prince George Drive, Grassy Park,

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