Police said a 44-year-old Nyanga woman was arrested after she allegedly trafficked her daughter for sexual exploitation and rape.
She allegedly made an arrangement for a man to have sex with her 13-year-old in exchange for money.
Police spokesperson FC Van Wyk said the mother was arrested on Sunday after the minor recently told a friend of her ordeal.
“The woman received payment from a man for him to have intercourse with her 13-year-old daughter during July in Nyanga,” said Van Wyk.
He said the hunt for the man was continuing.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the mother appeared at the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday and was charged with human trafficking for sexual exploitation and rape.
“More charges are likely to be added at a later stage,”said Ntabazalila.
The case has been postponed to October 29 for bail application.
Nyanga ward councillor Luyanda Nyingwa said the incident had shocked residents of the Mkhonto area.
“I’ll meet with all the relevant people to get more information about it, including the safety of the child. We strongly condemn what happened to the vulnerable girl. The man is from the area and hopefully he will be arrested soon. We cannot fathom what could be the mother’s reason behind this,” said Nyingwa.
Philisa Abafazi Bethu (PAB) director Lucinda Evans said the organisation had dealt with a similar case.
“About two years ago we received a report about a mother who sold her child. When the organisation approached the mother her justification for prostituting the child was that she needs to generate income for provision in the house. We lodged a formal complaint with the local police and she was arrested. The child was placed in a safe home.
“It is a sad reality that some mothers, people who should be the first protectors of children, are the reasons behind the trauma. There is absolutely no excuse to force a child into prostitution and this has become common in communities but is severely under-reported,” said Evans.
Meanwhile, police are investigating the alleged rape of an 11-year-old.
Van Wyk confirmed a case of rape had been opened for investigation in August at SAPS Lansdowne.
The girl’s 41-year-old mother said on August 11, she received a call from the school in Rondebosch that her daughter, who has cerebral palsy, was in hospital, a few days after spending the weekend with her at home.
“I returned her to the school on Monday. On Tuesday I received a call from the school that the child was not eating. I received another call from the manager of the school later on asking if I had a boyfriend at home.
“It was around past 8pm when again, another call came telling me that my child was taken to hospital and I should visit the school early the next morning,” she said.
The mother said when she arrived at the school the next morning she was informed by the manager that her daughter had been raped.
“The manager asked me again if I had a boyfriend. I thought she was joking, but this was a real question. She said that they checked their cameras and they did not see anything, and if this happened at my house they would keep my child, and if I come to see her I will be escorted (off the premises).
“The manager thinks I am hiding something. I was with the child the whole day. I do not have a boyfriend, I stay alone, I am a single mother,” she said.
“I am not ashamed of my child, I just want her to be safe. All this happened when my child was at school in their care, not when she was at home with me. I want the person who did this to my child to go to jail.”
Western Cape Department of Social Development spokesperson Esther Lewis said it had received reports of the allegations and a social worker assigned to the case. “The FCS (Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences) Unit is investigating the matter,” she said.
The school’s general manager said: “The matter is still under investigation. The school was investigated and cleared by the investigating officer. We have video footage to show nothing untoward happened while she was in our care.”
Ilitha Labantu spokesperson Siyabulela Monakali said since national lockdown began, about 30 cases of alleged child rape had been reported to the organisation.
“In most cases the perpetrators are known by the victims. There are many cases in townships where families encourage children to sleep with older men for money or receive payment for ‘damages’ when a child has been raped. The payment cannot buy the child’s dignity back.”