By Whinsley Masara
Police in Matabeleland South have arrested a suspect who broke into a 98-year-old granny’s bedroom hut and raped her in Kezi.
Police said the suspect aged 24, whose name has been withdrawn to protect the identity of the old woman as they are related, broke into the victim’s bedroom hut at around midnight last week on Monday and threatened to kill her before raping her once before fleeing into darkness.
The old woman and suspect lived alone at the homestead.
Matabeleland South police spokesperson Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele said they had arrested the suspect.
“Yes, the suspected has been arrested and has appeared in court so I can’t comment further,” he said.
Chief Nyangazonke said last week on Wednesday he held a meeting over the matter.
“I held a traditional court on Wednesday for this case and I was most disappointed to discover that family had known who the suspect was from day one but had decided to conceal the matter. Gone are the days of protecting criminals simply because they are family. I want justice to take its course,” he said.
“During the hearing, it was then revealed that the suspect, who is in police custody, wore plastic bags on his feet before he crawled into the old woman’s bedroom hut, as a way to hide foot prints. He had it all planned and seemingly had his whole time to prepare to commit the crime.”
Chief Nyangazonke blamed drug and alcohol abuse for the increase in cases of youths raping women, especially relatives.
“Parents open doors as late as midnight for their children who are youths who will be coming from beer drinking and expect them to respect them. I urge parents and guardians to revert to old cultural values in raising children and teach them to respect their elders,” he said.
The chief also urged members of the public never to conceal crime or to protect criminals in their communities.
“We also advise people never to let elderly people stay alone, especially at that age. The elderly are as good as children who need to be looked after and certainly letting a 98-year-old person stay alone is putting them at risk as they have no strength to fight and protect themselves,” he said. – The Chronicle