Thirteen year-old Katlego Marite from Emalahleni was found alive and his parents are still confused as to why their child was kidnapped.
Katlego was kidnapped by three men this past weekend while playing with his friends on the street. Earlier this week, the kidnappers allegedly sent a note to the family demanding Bitcoins in order for the boy to be released.
The news of Katlego Marite’s kidnapping caused panic around the community of Emalahleni and many parts of the country. The police were working together with community members and other stakeholders; who joined hands in search of the missing Katlego.
Katlego was last seen at Tasbetpark Extension 3 in Emalahleni where kids usually play on the quite streets.
When telling the story, Katlego’s two friends, who managed to run and raise the alarm with Katlego’s parents, said a gold Toyota Corolla approached them with three occupants and one of them grabbed him and drove off.
The police immediately started with the search.
Mpumalanga police spokesperson, Leonard Hlathi says this is a worrying trend.
“Katlego is amongst the statistics of missing children reported at various police stations around the country. In Mpumalanga, police are still investigating a case of murder after an eleven year old Lerato Nkutha from Embalenhle near Secunda went missing and her body was discovered two days later in a yard of a certain house.”
“Mpumalanga Child line welcomed the news of Katlego that he has been found alive. They then urged communities to work together to curb this evil trend.”
Pinky Mashabane, a social worker at the Childline office in Mbombela, says they are aware of the cases reported around the province.
She cautioned children to be wary of any strangers, “Mpumalanga police say together with other stakeholders and organisations they will embark on an awareness campaigns to curb this evil act and say NO to children abuse.”