Thandeka Moyo, Chronicle Reporter
A GRANDMOTHER allegedly gave away her teenage granddaughter to a villager to rape her as punishment for not bringing back R40 change.
The villager, who is a member of the Neighbourhood Watch Committee, went on to rape the teenager’s younger sister during a funeral wake, also with the granny’s blessings.
Efforts by the girls to get their attacker arrested were thwarted by their grandmother who insisted that Albert Mnkandla, 51, was a respectable person of authority in the community.
The rape suspect is a nephew to the girls’ grandmother.
Mnkandla appeared before regional magistrate Mark Dzira on Tuesday facing two counts of raping the older victim.
He was remanded in custody to January 26 for trial.
Mnkandla will appear again before a separate court facing two other counts of raping the younger sister.
In her statement, the siblings’ grandmother, who is a step mother to one of their parents, said she was told about Mnkandla’s alleged shenanigans but she could not report the matter to the police as he had apologised.
Prosecutors allege that sometime in January last year, the older sister took her ailing grandfather to Tsholotsho District Hospital.
On their way back, they discovered their transport money was not enough and agreed to pay the driver later.
“Upon their arrival at home, the grandfather instructed the girl to take R100 from his old jacket and pay bus fare. After paying, she did not bring back the change and this did not go down well with her grandmother who called Mnkandla to instil discipline in her,” said Dzipe.
“At Mnkandla’s homestead, he locked the girl in one of the rooms and raped her once threatening to assault her if she told anyone. The girl went back home and notified the grandmother who told her to go back to Mnkandla as she was yet to be disciplined.”
The court heard that the girl went back and was forced to sleep in Mnkandla’s bedroom.
“During the night, he woke up and raped her once. The girl went back home the next morning and narrated her ordeal to the grandmother,” Dzipe said.
“Her grandmother, however, dismissed her as a liar and the girl sought refuge at another homestead where she confided in another elderly woman.”
Mnkandla’s alleged sex attacks came to light when the girl’s sister doing Grade 6 confided in her class teacher.
“On August 6, the girls lost their grandfather and the grandmother instructed the younger sibling to seek accommodation at Mkandla’s homestead during the funeral wake,” said Dzipe.
“On their way, Mnkandla started fondling the girl’s buttocks and breasts. On the same night, Mnkandla raped her once.”
The court heard that the girl’s teacher noticed her deteriorating health and questioned her.
“The girl revealed the matter to her teacher leading to Mnkandla’s arrest.”
The two girls were taken to hospital and medical reports were produced.