Girl (14) traumatised after months of rape by stepdad
The family members of a 14-year-old Limpopo girl who was allegedly raped several times by her stepfather have had their lives torn apart since the abuse came to light.
The grade 9 pupil has allegedly been raped since January.
Her teacher noticed last Monday that she was struggling to cope in class. The girl revealed her ordeal to the concerned teacher who informed her mother.
Speaking from a place of safety, the 36-year-old mother told Sowetan she moved out of the house she shared with the suspect the same day she learnt about the rapes.
"I couldn't allow myself to stay in that house again after what happened to my daughter. I trusted that man with my children's lives but he saw a wife in my daughter.
"Since we opened the case on Thursday my daughter has been locking herself in the room and not talking to anyone for days. She is traumatised hence I'm calling for the police to find this man and send him to jail, "she said.
Police spokesperson Col Moatshe Ngoepe said the police in Bolobedu were on a manhunt for the suspect.
"It is alleged the victim was raped by her stepfather since January while the mother was away and he threatened to kill her if she told anyone," Ngoepe said.
"The suspect is known but he is still on the run and there is no arrest yet."
The mother said her daughter revealed on Thursday that her stepfather had been raping her since January and had threatened to kill the entire family if she told anyone.
"The day the [one] incident happened I was at home. The suspect asked my daughter to drive to a nearby complex to buy ice-cream and there was nothing suspicious because he would sometimes take them out. When they left I even shouted at them for leaving behind my other daughter aged six but they didn't pay attention."
The mother said her daughter told her that he raped her at the house of the suspect's friend in Bolobedu.
The mother said for the safety of her children she had ended the relationship and moved out of the house. She said she moved out with her three children, including a grade 12 pupil who is now struggling to find a school.
"I really need help to find my children space in any school so they can complete their studies for this year. I have struggled to find them space, everywhere it is full."
MEC for community safety Namane Masemola said he was saddened and deeply touched by the incident and ordered police to arrest the man.
"Police must search for him until they find him to come and face the full might of the law and account for his preposterous behaviour," he said.
MEC for social development Nkakareng Rakgoale said she was dispatching a team of social workers who will offer moral and psychological support to the family. "At the same time the team will asses the situation and understand all the challenges faced by the mother and her children."