A pastor from Moorreesburg north of Cape Town has been arrested for allegedly sexually molesting a four-year-old toddler for the second time in the past five months.
According to Netwerk24, the 49-year-old was arrested on Wednesday. He had reportedly been accused of raping and molesting the girl five months ago, but according to family members, police dragged their feet in investigating the allegations.
Western Cape police spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk confirmed the arrest, saying that the pastor would appear in the Morreesburg Magistrate's Court on Monday.
Netwerk24 reports that the pastor is close to the girl's family.
Venice Burgins of the Ukubavimba Foundation told the Cape Argus that she had to go to great lengths to get the matter on the court roll.
She reportedly said that police only acted after a report by the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit had been completed.
Residents were reportedly not happy that the suspect was not arrested after the first alleged incident in May.
Billy Claassen, executive director of the Rural and Farmworkers' Development Organisation, told the Cape Argus that people had been mobilised to attend the court proceedings on Monday morning and will be opposing bail for the clergyman.
Netwerk24 reports that there are other children who were allegedly molested by the pastor, but that the parents were too scared to lay charges.
- Compiled by Riaan Grobler