'Abusive' singer is nabbed

Kamogelo Seekoei

Kamogelo Seekoei

Kwaito musician Mgarimbe, real name Nkosinathi Mfeka, is behind bars after being arrested for child abuse by the police at Honeydew, north of Johannesburg.

Mfeka was arrested on Sunday after Sowetan alerted the police about the alleged ill-treatment of his four-year-old daughter. He will appear in the Roodepoort magistrate's court today on a charge of physical abuse.

"Just a mere look at the child tells a story. You can tell that the child was physically abused," West Rand police spokesman Captain S'phiwe Ndlovu said yesterday.

Police have warned that, pending investigations, more charges could be levelled against the singer, who became famous for his Sister Bethina tune.

Neighbours have accused Mfeka and his girlfriend Thedi Dlodlo of beating and starving the little girl.

Neighbours said the child had become withdrawn because she was always left alone at the couple's northern suburb home.

A neighbour said the girl had bruises and weals on her face, neck and legs showing that she was regularly beaten up.

But the artist, whose songs mostly contain crude lyrics, denied the allegations.

When Sowetan went to investigate the allegations, Mfeka said he only had two children. He denied the existence of the little girl. He showed reporters his two younger children.

"I don't know what you are talking about. I don't have three children. I have two and my oldest is a boy," Mfeka said on Friday, before police found the girl, dirty and hidden in the house.

Yesterday his girlfriend continued to deny that they had abused the child but could not say why they were hiding the child from Sowetan and the police.

"Mgarimbe probably forgot about the child because he was only used to the other two children. That child only came here recently, so I will assume that he forgot about her," she added.

Dlodlo said she did not know who the child's mother was or where she was.

Asked why the girl had bruises, she said: "She is sickly."

Their neighbour said he was glad that he did his part.

"I am glad they removed the child from them. All I wanted was to help that poor child," he said.

Ndlovu said the case was still being investigated. He added that the child had been taken to a place of safety in Krugersdorp.

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