Father 'kills' his own baby
A man has been arrested for the murder of his baby in Soweto after he had earlier told police he left the boy with a prostitute.
Police said the 22-month-old boy was reported missing on Wednesday.
Police spokesman Captain Kay Makhubele said the 41-year-old man reported a case of a missing person at Jabulani.
"According to information, the father of the child met a woman, whom it was the second time he was meeting, and they agreed to have a sexual encounter at the man's house in exchange for cash.
"On their arrival [home], the man requested to go and buy some cigarettes at a local shop, leaving behind the child with the woman," said Makhubele.
When the man returned from the shop, he claimed the woman had vanished with the baby, Makhubele said.
The boy's body was found behind Shoprite in Zola, Soweto, on Saturday.
Makhubele said they discovered the man had lied to them and arrested him.
"A shirt, Kor'an and sports bag were collected [from the scene] for further investigation," he said. It was not clear how the baby was killed.
Makhubele said he did not know the whereabouts of the mother of the baby.
When the Sowetan team visited the home yesterday, it was locked and nobody appeared to be home.
Neighbour Momo Zakwe said the mother of the baby lived in Zola and would rarely visit her son. Zakwe said that when she got home on Wednesday, she was told by her brother that the man had been going around the houses asking for an axe.
"He didn't find it. Then he went to look for it at Jabulani hostel and got it there," she said.
Zakwe said they were stunned by the man's confession on Saturday at their other neighbour's funeral. "He said he's the one who killed his son. He started screaming saying his son is not missing, he killed him," she said.
Zakwe said the boy was smart and would sometimes play on the streets, but spent a lot of time with his grandmother.
"His [the father] problem was marijuana. He was a talented carpenter and we are saddened by the death of his child. I want my kids to play near home because I do not trust anyone anymore."
Another neighbour, Bheki Mthembu, who was also the man's friend, said the man was on medication for a mental illness and was due to collect his next dosage on Wednesday.
He said the man had recently broken a neighbour's window without reason. Mthembu said he had seen him break his TV set and radio, throwing them outside. Mthembu said he also witnessed the confession on Saturday.
"I wish that fool could die," said another neighbour, Leo Khumalo, but he would not elaborate.
Makhubele said the man would appear in the Protea Magistrate's Court soon.