Plea for aid to suffering crime victims

Alfred Moselakgomo

Alfred Moselakgomo

Mpumalanga safety and security department head Isaiah Khoza has called on law enforcement agencies to give victims of crime adequate support to enable them to cope.

Khoza was speaking to people attending a criminal justice system meeting on Saturday at Kwaggafontein in KwaMhlanga.

He was visiting the homes of victims of crime in the area.

Among those he visited was Elizabeth Mthimunye, whose grandchild was shot.

Another of Mthimunye's grandchildren also survived an attempt on his life.

Two cases of murder and attempted murder were opened at a local police station.

The case of attempted murder was finalised and the perpetrator was convicted and sentenced.

A visibly-shaken Mthimunye said she was still battling to come to terms with what happened.

The second person visited was a victim of a car hijacking, who told the entourage that though his case was speedily resolved and the car recovered within a month, the police did not respond in time when he first opened the case.

He was also not informed about the finalisation of the case.

In another case of attempted murder, in which Themba Mbonani was shot in the back, the perpetrators were convicted and sentenced.

The victim was happy with the way in which the case was handled by the police, though he is still worried about his own safety.

In another incident a 17-yearold schoolgirl was raped.

Her grandmother said she was still traumatised and gets hysterical and highly emotional when she tells her story.

The child has been taken to relatives outside the province for fear of further victimisation.

Khoza called on the police to ensure that victims received counseling and were debriefed so that they were able to move on with their lives.

The department's visit to victims and survivors of crime is part of an ongoing effort to build partnerships for the creation of safer communities.