South Africa: Police Rescue a Grade 9 Girl Forced Into Marriage

press release

An integration of forces which comprised the Tactical Response Team (TRT), Engcobo Detectives, Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) and Mounted Unit has made a breakthrough. A 16-year-old, Grade 9 school girl who was reportedly forced into a marriage in the remote rural areas of Ngxangxasini Locality, Mpindweni in Engcobo has been rescued and taken to a place of safety, in an undisclosed location.

This follows a bitter struggle between the police and the community of Mpindweni, who had already mobilised in anticipation of arrival of the police. Despite insults and revolts by the members of the local community, the police remained calm, but determined to ensure that the child is rescued from the situation.

Biological parents have been summoned to Engcobo police station on 22 January 2020, to meet with the investigators, in order to determine the way forward regarding the future of the child.

Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Liziwe Ntshinga has expressed her appreciation for the work of heroism demonstrated by the members who were involved in the operation. "As the police in this province, we recognize the constitutional right of people to their culture and customs, but when that right is abused and found to be in conflict with the rights of a girl child to education and childhood, we have an obligation to step in and rescue the situation. And that is what we have done in this particular situation." she said

Lieutenant General Ntshinga further warned those who are hell-bent on forcing young children into marriage to refrain from this habit, or face the long arm of the law.

#Zizojika izinto - Turning the tide against crime

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