A 14-year-old Free State school girl is seven months pregnant after she was allegedly raped by her stepfather, who also has a child with her mother. The girl’s mother, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the girl, told Sunday World during a visit to the small farming town of Petrus Steyn that she wanted the Bangladeshi spaza shop owner to be released from custody as she was now struggling financially
since his arrest on Women’s Day.
“I don’t agree with what he did but I am now suffering because I have a child with that man, and now he can’t maintain our son,” said the mother.
“He has been a good father to both my children and I never thought he looked at my daughter with ‘that eye’.”
The woman said she had been dating the man since 2009 before she and her daughter moved in with him in his rented home.
The girl said the abuse began in March when her mother started working at a local potato farm.
“My horror started on the very first day when my mother started work. He waited for me to come back from school and asked me to wash the dishes. He then came to the kitchen, grabbed me from behind and took me to the bedroom. He took off my clothes and raped me. He then gave me R10. This happened almost everyday,” said the girl.
She said she found it hard to use the money because it reminded her of the dreadful moments with her stepfather in her mother’s bedroom. She always gave the money to her mom. After weeks of the abuse, she started feeling nauseous and moody and her mother took her to a local clinic where pregnancy was confirmed.
“When he found out that I was pregnant, he stopped raping me and promised to take care of the child after I gave birth.” The traumatised girl said she feared telling anyone who the father of her unborn baby was because she did not want her mother to know. She said she was assisted by her biological father to open a case when he heard the rumours on the streets that his daughter was pregnant.
Police spokesperson Puleng Lebakeng confirmed that a case of rape was opened and the suspect was arrested and is still in custody.
“A 40-year-old Bangladesh national was arrested on August 9 2019 for allegedly engaging in sexual activities with the 14-year-old victim who is also his stepdaughter,” said Lebakeng.
“It is also alleged that the victim tried to tell her mother about the matter in April after she missed her periods. The mother did not believe her and told her to keep quiet.
“The mother didn’t report the matter to the police, as a result she will also be charged under section 54 of sexual offences,” she said.
By Boitumelo Kgobotlo