Good Samaritan has no regrets

KIND GESTURE: Emily Xaba helped girl who stole money from her. Pic. Unknown
KIND GESTURE: Emily Xaba helped girl who stole money from her. Pic. Unknown

Penwell Dlamini

Penwell Dlamini

She was only about 14 years old, so Emily Xaba believed the sad story the girl told her.

Xaba, of Orange Farm, says the girl said she was from Katlehong in Ekurhuleni and that her mother had died.

She said she had come to the area to look for her grandmother.

"I took pity on her and gave her shelter," Xaba said. "I went to the police to tell them her story and asked them to help me find the girl's granny."

But four days after taking in the stranger the girl disappeared, and so did R810 Xaba kept in her purse.

Xaba said the girl introduced herself as Nomhle Stemela. She arrived at her house last Wednesday and left on Sunday with her loot.

"She said her mother, Nonsikelelo, had died. The girl wanted her grandmother to help bury her mother," Xaba. said.

"She said she was from Katlehong and that her neighbours had told her where to go and look for her grandmother in our area."

The girl had spent the night at a house next door before going to Xaba's house.

"Nomhle said she did not know how to organise the funeral because she was her mother's only child," Xaba said.

"She said her mother had worked at the Alberton Clinic as a cleaner."

Nomhle also had the address of her mother's friend, who lived in Matlose village near Roodepoort.

Moved by Nomhle's ordeal, Xaba called the Orange Farm police to help her trace her mother's friend.

The Orange Farm police interviewed Nomhle and called the Roodepoort police to help find her mother's friend.

"I was organising my uncle's funeral so I would come home late. She would always make me a cup of tea," Xaba said.

She later called the Alberton Clinic and was told that no one by the name Nomhle had given her had worked there.

Xaba is a businesswoman in the construction industry and a mother of three.

Things turned bad on Sunday morning when Xaba gave Nomhle her keys to fetch tablets from her wardrobe.

"I think she saw my money in the purse and could not withstand the temptation," Xaba said.

The teenager disappeared with R810 and and had not been heard of since.

"I don't think she is a thief because there were two cellphones lying there and she did not steal them.

" I have no regrets about trying to help the child."

Xaba refused to open a case with the police saying the girl must have personal problems.

"She must be going through an adolescent stage and might be from a home where they do not understand her," Xaba said.