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Sharon Mathala
HOPELESS: Mother and daughter


A horrific history of rape and abuse has left a 19- year-old teenager from Old Naledi maimed, bed ridden and hopeless.

In 2018, an unidentified man raped her but the case was not reported to the police.

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Earlier this year,another man raped the young woman and impregnated her.

The identity of her abusers is unknown although the police had said they were investigating.

What is in plain sight for all to see, however is the repercussions of the young woman’s attempt to get rid of the unplanned and unwanted baby.

Maimed and crippled by a botched back street abortion, she has been left with debilitating pain, regrets and a bleak future to deal with.

Four months ago she was a bubbly young woman who liked to dress up and go out with friends to enjoy herself while she waited for form four school placement.

Last week when The Voice visited her, the once beautiful young girl was a shadow of her former self, lying in bed, writhing in pain and in dire need of diapers and hospital care, something, which her parents were unable to provide.

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Narrating her daughter’s traumatic experiences, 46- year- old mother said, “I took her to a Traditional doctor. We were told she had eaten something that was eating her up inside (O ne a jele sejeso).”

The distraught and overwhelmed mother also told of how the traditional doctor, “ removed a snake like creature” from her daughter’s stomach as part of the treatment for the ‘sejeso’.

“That creature is the one which had stopped the baby from growing inside,” said the mother.

Quizzed on why the doctor’s note for her child had indicated that she had committed an abortion, the mother was adamant that she did not assist her to commit an illegal abortion.

“I am telling you I just took her to a traditional doctor. He gave her traditional medicine to heal her from the thing that was eating her inside. I didn’t even know then that she was pregnant,” she stressed.
The maimed young woman’s sister however had a different and painful story to tell.

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“Had my mother applied herself a bit more as a parent, my sister wouldn’t have ended up roaming around the streets of old Naledi and she definitely wouldn’t be lying on that bed helpless and in pain,” she said, lashing out.
Meanwhile the 19-year old struggled to interject but her speech came out slurred and laboured causing both her mother and sister to burst into tears.

“I don’t know what I have done to deserve this. I was not born like this. I was ok just four months ago. Whoever did this to me did so because they are jealous of me, why? I don’t know. The diapers that I am using are really uncomfortable,” she lamented.

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