'Drunk' initiates terrorise villagers

Kholofelo Talane was asleep when initiates jumped over the gate at her home in GaMasemola village on Sunday night.
Kholofelo Talane was asleep when initiates jumped over the gate at her home in GaMasemola village on Sunday night.
Image: ANTONIO MUCHAVE

The initiation season has got off to a bad start at a Limpopo village.

A group of initiates are accused of attacking villagers in GaMasemola, southeast of Polokwane.

Several homes have been attacked without clear motive, with the initiates forcing their way in and damaging or ransacking properties.

The attackers have also smashed windows and outside lights of other homes with stones and other objects.

Resident Girly Talane said she believed the behaviour of the initiates was influenced by alcohol.

"I've lived in this village for many years but have never seen anything like this.

"The behaviour of these men is uncalled for and it's high time community members are protected from these initiates' thuggish behaviour," Talane said.

Her daughter Kholofelo Talane, 37, said she was woken up by footsteps after the group jumped over the gate to gain entry onto their yard on Sunday night. She said they were singing derogatory songs and swearing at the occupants of each family home they entered before damaging property.

"They used force to enter our homesteads and later swore at us, thereby threatening our lives," said Kholofelo.

She has opened a case with the police.

Another resident, Kgathane Ranape, said she was living in fear after the men broke windows to her home and also damaged outside lights.

"I was frightened when the men entered my home and started breaking windows. It still remains a mystery what the men were looking for in my yard," Ranape said.

Businessman Paul Mokalapa said he was still counting the losses after the group damaged his properties.

 

Limpopo House of Traditional Leaders chairman Chief Malesela Dikgale yesterday condemned the actions of the initiates.

 

Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said police were investigating four counts of malicious damage to property.

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