South African police have arrested a nanny, after a 20-month-old boy, whom she was hired to care for, was found dead at home in Ekurhuleni.
Lerato Mngun, the child’s mother, said she hired the nanny through a Tembisa-based placement agency, when her late son, Langelihle Mngun, was two months old.
“Why? I just want to know why,” said Lerato
The incident occurred last Friday, when she returned from work with her aunt and found the security gate locked, but the door was opened, with the keys left on the kitchen floor.
“I thought she had taken my child and run off,” Lerato also said.
Her aunt eventually got into the house and found the nanny in her bedroom, praying on the floor with her top removed.
She allegedly had white substances around her, and inflicted some injuries on herself. The nanny had also vomited and defecate.
“She said they [intruders] had broken into the house. I asked her where the child was and she said they had taken him,” Lerato further narrated.
According to her, the nanny claimed that the attack happened at about 5.30am, shortly after herself and the aunt left for work.
“We asked her who the culprits were and whether she had seen them and she said yes. She said she had heard the voice of a neighbour. She opened the door and burglar gate for them. They came in, forced her to drink poison and took off with the child,” the mother disclosed.
Sitting on her bed with a small photo frame containing Lihle’s picture and a candle burning next to it, Lerato said she rushed outside, searching for her son to no avail.
She said they called the paramedic, who insisted that the family bathe the nanny before taking her for treatment.
“They said they could not take her because she had defecated on herself, so they asked us to bathe her. My aunt went to the storeroom to go and get a small tub that we could wash her in,” Lerato noted.
It was at the storeroom that the aunt discovered the body of the child.
“My aunt picked up the child, thinking he was still alive and rushed him to the paramedics who were attending to the nanny,” Lerato stated.
The child’s father, Sihle Tshabalala, tried to resuscitate him with the paramedics, but it was too late.
“I was just holding him, hoping and praying for a miracle,” Sihle said.
“We had spent two to three hours outside. I had this hope or belief that I could do something. I tried everything.
“I tried CPR for close to an hour. I was just holding him, hoping and praying for a miracle.
“The post mortem said there was a fracture around the neck. There was no poison found.
He added that his child had been allegedly strangled.
Confirming the incident, Police Brigadier, Mathapelo Peters, said:
“A woman is expected to make a second appearance in court next week following the death of a 20-month-old toddler. She appeared in the Benoni magistrate’s court [on Monday] after a preliminary investigation by the police linked her to the death of the child. She was arrested on Friday, the 18th.
“Initially, the woman had claimed to police that robbers had come into the house and forced her to consume poison as well as the child. The child was found dead while the woman was rushed to hospital. But when police conducted the initial investigation surrounding the death of the child, the woman was found to be a possible suspect.”