FRANCISTOWN: A Lerala village man has been remanded in custody for allegedly raping his neighbour’s five-year-old child.
The 44-year-old appeared before Palapye Magistrate’s Court last week and will appear again for his mention on April 27.
Maunatlala police station commander, Sello Ntwaagae said they were investigating the alleged rape incident that occurred at Lerala’s Mpeo ward.
He said the incident took place on April 3 in the absence of the victim’s parents. He added that the suspect is the parent’s neighbour and could neither confirm nor deny if they were family friends or not.
When speaking about what transpired, Ntwaagae said the victim was left behind by her grandmother, 56, and her mother, 36, early in the morning. He narrated that when the grandmother returned from her errand she found the victim playing with the neighbour’s child, a six-year-old.
He added: “Apparently when the grandmother got back, the six-year-old neighbour asked the victim to report what happened to her (to her grandmother). The 56-year-old woman wondered what might have ensued in her absence and started questioning her grandchild. The victim later shared with her grandmother that their neighbour sexually
The Maunatlala police chief said the victim’s grandmother became more worried and further questioned the child following the accusations.
He added: “The victim further narrated to her grandmother that, their neighbour called her to his house while they were playing. Upon arrival at the house, the suspect offered her P2 and then went on to undress her denim and forced himself on her.” Ntwaagae said after the victim narrated her story, the grandmother went on to report the matter at the Lerala Police Station.
He stated that the victim was then taken to a children’s doctor at Nyangabwe Referral Hospital for a check-up and they are awaiting the results.
He also said since the beginning of the year and 2020, they had not received any shocking reports of a middle-aged man sexually abusing a toddler.
He added that the rape incident has shocked people in the area. Ntwaagae urged parents to look after their children and never leave them unsupervised, at all times. Investigations on the matter continue.