A 33-year-old woman who allegedly dumped her newborn baby into a pit toilet, and left the child to die, narrowly escaped death at the hands of an angry mob of community members.
The woman was severely assaulted by community members on Wednesday, according to Mpumalanga police spokesperson, Brigadier Selvy Mohlala.
“Police in Calcutta were called to the scene where the newborn baby who was already in a decomposing state was found in a pit toilet at Hlangalezwe in Mkhuhlu.
“The lifeless body was recovered by family members who went to clean their father's property,” said Mohlala.
“Whilst busy cleaning, one of the family members made a gruesome discovery in the pit toilet. The gender of the child could not be established due to the body's state.”
Police were summoned and they rushed to the gruesome scene.
“Whilst busy with administration duties, a mob justice complaint was received. Police had to rush to the scene to save life. On the police arrival, a female victim was found to be under attack by the angry mob,” said Mohlala.
Police established that the woman who was attacked by the angry mob was previously pregnant.
“She was no longer expecting and had no baby to show. It was also established that the victim was staying where the lifeless baby was found and suspicions were that she might have concealed the baby's birth,” said Mohlala.
The besieged woman was rescued from the angry mob and taken to the police station for questioning.
“Police at this stage believe the victim might be linked to the registered child neglect case that was registered, where the baby was found in the pit toilet,” said Mohlala.
Meanwhile, provincial commissioner of police in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela has strongly condemned the act of depriving an innocent baby the right to life.
“Community members should bear in mind that if they happen to have unwanted children, they should give them for adoption rather than taking their lives,” said Manamela.
“It is quite disturbing if such incidents happen whilst we are in the middle of 16 days of activism for no violence against women and children.”
South Africa has joined nations across the world in observing the international campaign, which is internationally called the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence.
It is an annual international campaign which kicks off on November 25 listed by the United Nations as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. The campaign runs until December 10.