12-YEAR-OLD rape victim living in fear.

A 12-YEAR-OLD rape victim from Bulawayo's Cowdray Park suburb is still living in torment and fear after having met her alleged perpetrator of two years on three different occasions with the latest being late last month.

The family of the victim feels that their daughter is being denied justice as they reported the alleged rapist but police authorities reportedly did nothing.

According to neighbours, the rapist is obsessed with the girl as he has been seen roaming near the girl's residence on a number of occasions.

The innocence of the victim's face brings tears to her grandmother's eyes.

The weeping granny revealed that her granddaughter requested to be transferred to another school, as she was afraid of meeting the alleged rapist once more. In heeding her call, the girl was transferred but she is still engulfed by fear and torment.
12-YEAR-OLD rape victim living in fear.
"The man met the girl on her way from school on 20 September 2013. He asked her name before taking her to the nearby bush and raped her. After finishing his business, he brought her back and gave her R2,50 and told her not to tell anyone about the incident. He promised to give her R5 the following day but never did that. After being raped, she came home depressed and told us she was abused by a stranger," narrated the grandmother.

"Soon after the incident we reported the matter to the police but the person was not arrested. She has met the person three times and the last time was two weeks back. I tried to run after him but I failed to get hold of him, as he was too far."

Our news crew also spoke to the girl.

"I met him in October 2013, February 5 last year and two weeks back on a Friday when I was coming from school," said the clever-looking girl who is now doing Grade Six.

During the interview, the grandmother was with the girl who also happens to be an orphan.

"These children are unsettled because few weeks back my neighbour saw him peeping through the durawall. It is only recently that I again reported the matter to the police who came and did some investigation. Police told me they got something," she said.

According to the medical report from United Bulawayo Hospitals, the doctor indicated that "there was penetration" and the "pregnancy results were negative".

Bulawayo police spokesperson Inspector Mandlenkosi Moyo confirmed that they were handling the case. He said: "We are dealing with such a case. As the police we are still investigating the matter but the suspected rapist is also not known. We appeal to the members of the public to assist us with any information which might assist us in solving this matter."

A Childline Zimbabwe Bulawayo official, who only identified herself as Mrs M S Madonko, urged the family to approach them for help.

"The family can call toll free number 116. There are counsellors who work 24/7 to assist victims. If people are not satisfied with the services given or they need more help they can visit our offices. I therefore advise the family to take any of the routes," said Mrs Madonko.

Last year's statistics show that 240 children were sexually abused monthly, of which 27 percent of the cases were perpetrated by neighbours and 41 percent of the cases perpetrated by relatives.

President Robert Mugabe last year suggested that child rapists should be castrated. He was also supported by the then Women's Affairs, Gender and Community Development Minister Oppah Muchinguri after realising that 33 percent of females and nine percent males were experiencing sexual violence prior to the age of 18 years.
Source: Sunday News

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