19 May 2017

South Africa: President Shocked By What Little Courtney Endured

Pretoria — President Jacob Zuma says he is shocked by the things that the late Courtney Pieters went through.

"I am shocked by the things that her family told me were done to this little girl. It is pointing to something fundamentally wrong in society that someone can do this to a child," said President Zuma.

The President visited the Pieters family in their home at Elsies River in Cape Town, on Thursday, to offer them support and comfort.

Three-year-old Courtney was raped twice before being murdered and buried in a shallow grave in Bofors Circle in Epping, Industria, after she went missing on May 4, from her Pluto Street home in Elsies River in the Western Cape.

Her alleged killer, 40-year-old Mortimer Saunders, is in custody and the case will return to court on 24 May.

President Zuma expressed his shock and condemnation of the criminal elements in society who commit atrocious acts of violence and murder of women and children.

"I have personally conveyed on behalf of government our deepest condolence to the Pieters family."

The President undertook to return to the area to look into the many challenges of crime and murder especially of children and how law enforcement authorities would improve their services to the community.

The President's visit was also to raise awareness of the need to end the scourge of the attacks on women and children.

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