The month of activism against the abuse of women and children is not off to a good start. This past weekend in Ceres in the Western Cape, a 7 year-old boy and a 4 month-old baby were raped by the same man. Police Spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Andre Traut clarified earlier reports and confirmed that the children are not siblings though they live on the same farm.
The baby was taken from her parent’s bed while they were sleeping. The man allegedly took the baby to another area of the home where he raped her brutally. The little boy was raped by the same man. The baby was taken to the Red Cross Children’s Hospital where she underwent reconstructive surgery. She is expected to remain there for some time. On Tuesday, a suspect was taken in for questioning.
Western Cape Police Commissioner Arno Lamoer confirmed that a man is being held and interrogated for information about the two rapes. The man recently moved in with the family on the farm. He was considered a family friend. The residents are angered by the brazenness of the attack. Many are shocked that a crime of this nature could take place in the usually quiet and peaceful town of Ceres. Ceres is known for its farms and vineyards.
The Justice Department will proceed with its programme of campaigns which are scheduled for the entire month of August in areas such as Khayelitsha, Delft, Mitchells Plain and Stellenbosch in the Western Cape. The campaigns intend to address issues surrounding violence against women and children and to find practical solutions to assist victims.
Rape, particularly child rape, remains a dark stain on the democratic South African landscape. Even during Women’s Month, women and children are victims of heinous, sex-fuelled crimes. Many of the victims end up permanently scarred and disfigured or worse; dead. A specialized task team was set up to investigate the rapes of the baby girl and young boy.