By Staff Reporter
A nine-year-old boy was subjected to hours of physical torture after being wrongly accused of raping a four-year-old toddler.
The Grade 3 learner at a local primary school at Tshimbupfe Tshikindi in Vuwani was ordered to strip naked and put in a bath full of freezing cold rain water. He was later badly beaten with a belt.
The incident, which took place on Thursday evening, has rocked the community in Vuwani, in Limpopo province.
The grandmother of the four-year-old girl allegedly became suspicious of the boy after her granddaughter developed urinary problems.
The granny had seen the two children playing together and suspected the boy had raped his young friend.
She took the girl to the local hospital and, despite being told by medical examiners that the child had not been raped but was suffering from an unrelated illness, the grandmother stubbornly stuck by her accusations.
The boy’s mother said she was in church on Wednesday when she received the horrific news that her young son had been accused of sexually assaulting a toddler.
“I was summoned to the baby’s granny’s house which is just across the street. The granny told me my son had raped the baby and, even though I could not get the full facts about the whole incident, I apologised on behalf of the boy as it is the norm in villages,” she told Scrolla.Africa.
“The granny accepted the apology but I was surprised to be called to the family again the following day,” she said, adding that she was invited to their property at 9.00pm.
She said the girl’s uncle and his friend told her he was not happy about what happened and told her to bring the boy.
“My son was questioned and threatened but despite threats, the boy vehemently denied raping the baby.”
The boy was then told to strip naked and was forced to get into a bath full of freezing water. However, as he continued to maintain his innocence, the uncle allegedly resorted to beating a confession out of him using a belt.
“I had to watch my son being tortured for almost two hours,” said his mother.
“My son went through the worst trauma and this will stay with him for a long time.”
She says the boy has nightmares and cries at night.
The mother says she has laid charges with the Vuwani police.
This article was first published by Scrolla.Africa