- A 2-year-old girl died, and her 4-year-old brother and 69-year-old grandfather are fighting for their lives after they were allegedly poisoned.
- Their mother's 30-year-old friend has since been charged with murder and two counts of attempted murder.
- Police suspect that the friend is the mother's boyfriend.
A two-year-old Mpumalanga girl is dead and her four-year-old brother is fighting for his life after they were allegedly poisoned by their mother's male friend.
Their 69-year-old grandfather was also hospitalised.
The 30-year-old friend has since been arrested and is expected to appear in the Chief Albert Luthuli Magistrate's Court on Friday on a charge of murder and two counts of attempted murder.
Police suspect that the man is the mother's boyfriend.
Mpumalanga police spokesperson Colonel Selvy Mohlala said the family was reportedly poisoned on Wednesday evening in Elukwatini.
Friend 'refused to eat'
He said information at their disposal was that the children's 26-year-old mother prepared supper for her family. Shortly after, her male friend arrived and told her that something was burning in the kitchen.
Mohlala said the woman indicated that the stove was off, but the friend allegedly went to the kitchen and then returned.
"A few moments later it is reported that the little girl got sick and started vomiting. Then the boy also began [getting] sick as well. Their grandfather too [became ill and] emergency services personnel were summoned, but on their arrival, the younger one was certified dead. The boy as well as the woman's father were taken to hospital for treatment."
Mohlala said Elukwatini police were alerted and a case was opened.
"An investigation was conducted and the preliminary findings suggest that the family members became victims of alleged poisoning. The suspect was then arrested, hence his court appearance," he said.
We want to hear your views on the news. Subscribe to News24 to be part of the conversation in the comments section of this article.