A 58-year old ANC ward councillor in Limpopo has accused a 14-year-old girl of stealing his tablet but her mother says he gave her the device after he allegedly raped the grade 9 pupil.
The teenager's mother, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the minor, said she was shocked when the councillor accompanied by the police demanded to see her daughter.
"The councillor said he gave my daughter a lift and she stole his work tablet when he dropped her off. He was angry and he took out [a stash of cash] from his pocket and threatened to enlist the services of a sangoma if she doesn't return it," the mother told Sowetan yesterday.
"I was shocked by the allegations because I know my daughter is not a thief. But I was worried because she hadn't come back home that night and when she left she didn't say where she was going. Moments after the police left she came back home and denied stealing his tablet," she said.
The mother said her daughter broke down in tears and revealed she was raped, allegedly by the councillor.
"I immediately took her to the Mokwakwaila police station to open a case. My child is no longer the same, she has been isolating herself in her room," she said.
The councillor in question serves in the Greater Letaba municipality whose seat is Modjadjiskloof.
Police spokesperson Brig Motlafela Mojapelo said the councillor appeared in the Bolobedu magistrate's court yesterday for the rape of the 14-year-old girl.
Mojapelo said the girl was allegedly offered a lift by the suspect on Thursday night.
"The suspect then drove into the bushes next to Rampepe village where he allegedly raped the child. He thereafter reportedly took her home, gave her money and a cellphone and told her not to tell anyone," Mojapelo said.
"He was remanded in custody until October 14 for further police investigations."
The councillor cannot be named as he has not yet pleaded to the charge.
The mother said it was the first time she had seen the councillor and her daughter doesn't know him either.
The municipality spokesperson Lovers Maenetja said: "We condemn any gender-based violence or abuse and officials will meet soon to act on the allegations. At the moment we have deployed one of our councillors to the ward to continue to service people."