Family 'confused and shattered' after missing sisters, 5 and 7, found dead in clump of bushes

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Siblings Kamogelo and Tshegofatso Raphasa went missing in Marobjane village in Senwabarwana, Limpopo.
Siblings Kamogelo and Tshegofatso Raphasa went missing in Marobjane village in Senwabarwana, Limpopo.
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  • Police are investigating after the bodies of the two children were found in bushes in Limpopo.
  • The children went missing in August and their bodies had decomposed when they were found.
  • They had last been seen with a woman who was found sleeping on the side of the road.

Confused and shattered.

That's how the grandmother of the two sisters whose decomposed bodies were found on Tuesday after they had been missing for two weeks, described the family's emotional state following the gruesome discovery.

The bodies of Kamogelo Raphasha, 7, and her sister, Tshegofatso, 5, were found at about 18:00. They  had been missing since 23 August in Marobjane village in the Senwabarwana policing area,  Limpopo.

They were reportedly last seen walking with a woman related to a man their great-grandmother is in a relationship with. The woman is believed to be mentally challenged.

A passer-by found the bodies in the graze camp next to GaMashalane village. The bodies, which were next to each other in the bush, were already in a state of decomposition.

Speaking to News24, the children's 41-year-old grandmother, Regina Raphasha, said the children's 24-year-old mother was battling to cope with the deaths.

Raphasha, who lives in Gauteng with the children's mother, said the sisters stayed with their great-grandmother in Limpopo and she was "confused" when she received a call from her saying they had gone missing.

"I asked how this happened because the children hardly go anywhere and also, they use transport to and from school.

"She [the great-grandmother] said a woman who is her live-in lover's daughter came to visit and went out with the children. The woman was found the next day and when she was asked where the children were, she said she didn't know."

According to Limpopo police spokesperson Brigadier Mojafela Motlapele, the woman was suspected to be mentally challenged.

He said the woman was found sitting at a bus stop and she could not give police coherent answers when asked about the children.

Raphasha said she did not know the woman and when she went home after the news to confront her about the missing children, she ended up in an altercation with the woman's father.

She said:

This is a woman I don't know and when I tried to confront her, her father was angry with me and said I shouldn't speak to his daughter.

Raphasha said they looked for the children for two weeks until they received the call that changed their lives on Tuesday.

"We had been looking for them and even had missing person posters all over. Someone found the kids and called the councillor. We then received a call and went to the scene, and we found that they were no more," she said.  

Raphasha said she was just "glad" the sisters were found, but wanted the police to find whoever was responsible for their deaths.

"We want the police to continue with their investigations and to find out what really happened to our children," she said.

Meanwhile, the police said they needed to determine whether any individual could be held responsible for the deaths of the children.

"The police will now open an inquest docket to probe the circumstances that led to this sorrowful incident. We urge community members in the area to remain calm and give the investigations space to unfold unhindered," Limpopo police commissioner, Lieutenant-General Thembi Hadebe said.

A post-mortem would be conducted to determine the cause of death. 

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