Cops will hunt them down

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

The police will hunt for the grandchildren who stole their grandmother's pension grant and left her vulnerable and destitute.

The 80-year-old granny was raped for the second time at the weekend after her grandchildren disappeared with her pension stipend.

Police said they would track them down and arrest them.

The incident happened on Saturday night at Mfekayi reserve, near Mtubatuba, northern Zululand.

However, police have not arrested the rapist, despite claims by the local community that he is known to them.

Local councillor and speaker of the Hlabisa municipality Zakhele Nyawo told Sowetanhe had spoken to the police and social welfare authorities about pursuing criminal charges against the grandchildren.

"I spoke to the head of police in our area about the matter. He said it would be possible if the social welfare people provided a report which would support a prosecution," Nyawo.

"If everything works out, they would be arrested this weekend when the granny receives her pension payment."

Nyawo visited the victim on Monday and said he was heartbroken at what he saw.

"She lives alone with no care. The grandchildren only buy her a 10kg bag of mealie meal and then take the rest of her R700 pension.

"She has a blanket and a mattress to sleep on.

"The house is dirty.

The front door is broken and a child could easily kick it open," he said.

He said they had already placed her in a better and safer home with relatives.

"We are trying to get assistance from the housing department to build her a better house.

"Housing for the elderly is a major challenge in rural areas as there are no old-age homes."

Mandla Ngwenya, spokesman for the provincial department of social welfare, said they would intervene and help the pensioner.

"Those grandchildren should be arrested. We will work with the police to track them down and charge them," Ngwenya said.

"The fact that they take her stipend against her will is a criminal offence and they would be prosecuted."

Efforts are also made to have the provincial department of housing build her a better home, he said.