Two children in Lonehill, Johannesburg, spent hours with their murdered mother's corpse before getting help, Gauteng’s social development MEC said on Thursday.
The two, aged four and nine, were left with her body after she was killed on Wednesday, allegedly by a disgruntled domestic worker, Nandi Mayathula-Khoza said in a statement.
She said her department worked through the night to help the distraught children and reunite them with other family members, including their father.
“After we moved the children from the crime scene, we provided them with the necessary psychosocial support, mobilised the intervention of forensic pathologists through the Gauteng department of health, who assisted us to remove the body of the deceased.
“We also alerted the SAPS provincial commissioner to ensure that the police on the scene implemented children-friendly investigation protocols,” Mayathula-Khoza said.
The mother was stabbed repeatedly. The children were in the house at the time. Randburg police spokesperson Captain Makgowanyana Maja said no arrests had been made yet. He could not confirm if the children witnessed the murder.
Mayathula-Khoza said further details would be released as soon as social workers had presented their preliminary findings. The department would provide help to the children and the family for as long as it was necessary.
Meanwhile, Mayathula-Khoza said she was shocked and angered by the rape and murder of an 86-year-old woman in Watville, Ekurhuleni. Mmule Mpakanyane was raped and suffocated.
“We condemn this cowardly deed and call on Gauteng residents to join hands with us to protect our elderly from such cruelty.”
Mayathula-Khoza would visit Mpakanyane’s home on Friday.