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  • Not safe for kids? Concerns raised about SA’s ‘child murder hot-spot’

    Not safe for kids? Concerns raised about SA’s ‘child murder hot-spot’

    A devastating discovery in Polokwane this week has left a number of politicians concerned about Limpopo’s child murder rate. The body of a toddler was found by the roadside near a major highway – and it’s led to a course of introspection in the Provincial Legislature.

    Limpopo in ‘sorry state’ with child murder rates

    Nine high-profile child murders in the past nine months have broken communities and families all across Limpopo. A timeline of these gut-wrenching events shows just how serious this matter has become in the north-east…

    • August 2021: The bodies of three children – aged 15, nine, and six – were found in a river. They were last seen boarding an unknown vehicle.
    • August 2021: A six-year-old was found dead after she disappeared from her family home in Phokwana village.
    • September 2021: The bodies of two sisters, aged six and seven, were found in the Senwabarwabana area.
    • December 2021: A young girl, aged six, was raped and murdered by a 28-year-old.
    • April 2022: The body of a three-year-old was found dumped in the bushes outside Groblersdal.
    • May 2022: The mutilated body of a toddler was found in a black bag near the N1 in Polokwane.

    ‘It’s not good enough’, DA says

    Katlego Phala is the DA’s Provincial Spokesperson on Transport and Community Safety. The MPL has ripped into the provincial police commissioner, claiming that Thembi Hadebe is failing to ‘protect the vulnerable’ as previously promised.

    What’s more, Phala – who was left ‘shocked and saddened’ by this latest killing – has also made a request to Limpopo Premier Stan Mathabatha, asking his office to provide a full set of child murder statistics for the region.

    “During this spate of child murders, Limpopo Provincial Police Commissioner, Lt Gen Thembi Hadebe, vowed to do whatever was necessary to protect the vulnerable and yet under her watch another toddler was mutilated and murdered.”

    “It is clear that our young children live in peril and the DA is concerned that the ANC executive is either unwilling to address the crisis, embarrassed by it or indifferent to a dramatic spike in child murders.”

    Katlego Phala

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