Namibia: Rape Victim's Mother Vows to Deal With Suspect

Handcuffs.

THE mother of an eight-year-old girl who was allegedly brutally raped at a Windhoek district farm on Friday said she would take the law into her hands if she finds the suspect.

Although names of suspects usually are not released until after they appear in court, police chief inspector Kauna Shikwambi requested that the suspect, in this case Gervin Gowanab (20), should be identified since he is on the run and they want the public's assistance in tracing him.

According to the mother of the victim, Gowanab allegedly found the girl playing with her friend outside their home in Otjomuise's 7de Laan while she was at work.

Shikwambi said that a member of the public had allegedly seen Gowanab in the company of the victim earlier in the day.

The girl told The Namibian in her mother's presence yesterday that "the man came there where we were playing with my friend".

"He took us both, and dragged us to a riverbed. He said if we shout, he would kill us. He later pushed my friend away because she was too skinny, and took only me," she said during an interview at the Windhoek Central Hospital where she was admitted following the incident.

Shikwambi alleged that Gowanab tried to rape the girl, and after realising that he could not, allegedly mutilated her private parts with a knife.

Gowanab, who is currently on bail, was supposed to appear in court today for another rape case.

The incident happened four days before the girl's 9th birthday today.

A health official told The Namibian yesterday that the girl was in a critical condition when she was brought to the Windhoek Central Hospital on Friday for surgery.

The mother, who cannot be named to protect the minor, said her daughter was better now compared to the day when she was rushed to hospital.

Sitting by her daughter's side in the hospital, the mother said she was on the bus from work when she received a call between 15h00 and 16h00 from her husband that their daughter was missing.

"I feared for the worse. When I got off the bus, I saw people rushing to the scene. I already knew something was wrong. Today, I am grateful and happy she is alive. I know her emotional scars will not heal now, but I am happy she is alive," she said, tears welling in her eyes.

Describing the suspect as an animal that belongs behind bars, the mother said she was proud of her child, and grateful to God for her life.

"She was brave because after the rape incident, she ran to the road, and stopped a car passing by. Thank God the car stopped, and they were good people. They took her to the Daan Viljoen police roadblock nearby to report the case," she explained.

She said "if the police are not going to do their job after arresting him and keep him where he belongs, I will take the law into my own hands".

She added that men who rape children must be hanged instead of being sent to prison "because what he did to her was so bad and brutal".

"He should be hanged," the mother said of the suspect. "Life imprisonment is too small a punishment. It is nothing compared to what he has done."

The girl is expected to be discharged from hospital today.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Gowanab is requested to contact inspector Monika Kaypiti on 081 296 2322 or the nearest police station.

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