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May 23, 2024
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WOMAN IN COURT FOR CHILD NEGLIGENCE

Qacha’s Nek, July.25 — A 29-year-old woman of TJ has appeared before court today for neglecting her 13-year-old son.

She is charged with contravention section 44 (1) of Child Protection and Welfare Act (CPWA) , 2011 on that from 2021 to July 13, 2023 the accused unlawfully left her child without providing for his basic needs such as food, clothes and guidance.

The accused asked for bail and representation of a lawyer and the Public Prosecutor Advocate Tsotang Maile was not against her request.

However, he asked if the court grants her, there should be surety and terms for her not to interfere with the accused.

“Working in collaboration with the police, we have not found a place for the victim, it is difficult as he stays with the accused,” he said.

Resident Magistrate, Mrs. ‘Mampho Mokoena granted her bail on conditions that she pays bail deposit of M1000.00 which she managed to pay, surety of M10 000.00 worth belongings, not interfere with state witness, not hamper police investigations, attend remands and stand trial to finality.

She was remanded to August 1, 2023 for the trial date to be set.

Section 44 (1) of the CPWA states that a person who abuses, neglects, abandons or exposes a child in a manner likely to cause the child physical, psychological or emotional injury commits an offence and is liable to conviction or to imprisonment.

The Act further states that “a parent or guardian or other person legally obliged to maintain a child shall be deemed to have neglected the child in a manner likely to cause the child physical, psychological or emotional injury if he fails to provide adequate food, clothing, medical treatment, lodging, care, guidance and protection to the child.”

The Act provides that “a child has a right to live with his parents and grow up in a caring and peaceful environment unless it is proved in court that living with his parents shall…lead to significant harm to the child”.

It is a growing trend nowadays where a parent neglects their children or leaves them with other children as if it is alright countrywide.

Some of these children are taken to care facilities, while others are placed with their relatives. Other cases go unreported. 

Reports show that about 1 891 calls depicting various types of emergencies for children were received from July 2021 to June 2022.

Of these cases, child neglect ranked highest followed by sexual offences and economic related matters.

Ends

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