'Tell me if my hubby is dead'

THE family of the Pretoria policeman who has been missing for almost two weeks is starting to become desperate.

THE family of the Pretoria policeman who has been missing for almost two weeks is starting to become desperate.

GaRankuwa top crime-buster Detective Inspector Andrew Bachipile Rapeta's wife, Sarah, says she is ready to accept the worst. All she wants is to know her husband's fate.

"If he is kidnapped, I appeal for his immediate release so that he could be able to explain to the police exactly what happened. If he is dead, let us know about the whereabouts of his remains so that we can give him a dignified burial," she pleaded yesterday.

Making matters more traumatic for the family, the police have made it known that they think Sarah might know whathad happened to her husband.

"They insisted that I know where my husband is and I should tell them the truth, even if I told them I did not know where he is. They promised to return any time yesterday (Tuesday) and that I should not leave my home."

Rapeta, 48, a father of two, disappeared on his way home from GaRankuwa police station on July 2. He has worked in the GaRankuwa detective branch for 28 years. His family last saw him when he left for work that morning, while some of his colleagues last saw him the same day.

Sarah told Sowetan that it was the first time that Rapeta had stayed away from home. She said Rapeta was wearing a brown and white shirt, green pair of trousers, a light brown jacket and a black pair of Crocket & Jones shoes when he left home.

She said they had looked for him all over the place, including at his relatives and friends.

Asked if he was armed when he left home, she said: "He did not have a firearm. He returned home bleeding about two months ago and told us that he was robbed of his firearm and a cellphone. He opened a robbery case."

Inspector Matthews Nkoadi, of the GaRankuwa police, confirmed Sarah was questioned and they were questioning others close to Rapeta.

He confirmed that a case of robbery was opened in Mabopane over his Rapeta's firearm.

Nkoadi, who with a Sowetan team joined detectives on the search for Rapeta in bushes outside Mothutlong, near Brits, yesterday, said he had received a call about the partly decomposed body of man found in the bush at Hebron, adjacent to Zone 8, GaRankuwa.

"It was definitely not his (Rapeta's) body," he said.

Nkoadi added that the search would continue today - 13 days after his disappearance.