'Mom who buried kid alive might have done it before'

Getrude Makhafola

Getrude Makhafola

Police believe that the woman who allegedly buried her one- month-old baby girl alive behind her shack might have done it before.

The woman, 43, was arrested on Sunday following the community alerting the police after she could not account for her baby.

She was charged with concealment of birth after police exhumed the remains of the child behind her Diepsloot shack.

Police said they were investigating the possibility that she had committed the spine-chilling act before. "We have been gathering evidence and statements from witnesses and neighbours.

"It has emerged that she might have another child buried somewhere. We are investigating all possibilities," said police spokesman Captain Packree Ashraaf.

Ashraaf also said that they were awaiting a pathology report after the postmortem had been performed.

The body was already in an advanced state of decomposition.

X-rays and tests will be performed to check for bruises and broken bones.

"The forensics are trying to find something out of the ordinary from the bones because the flesh had decomposed," said Ashraaf.

The mother told the police that as part of her tradition, she had consulted her elders in Limpopo who told her to go ahead and bury the body.

She told the police before her arrest that the child was stillborn, contradicting the community's various statements that the child had been alive and well. She will appear in the Atteridgeville magistrate's court today.