Child abandonment and abuse is escalating in townships in KwaDukuza, Etete being one of the main problem areas.
Horrific cases of abuse are now being regularily seen by the police.
Umhlali SAPS spokesperson captain Vinny Pillay said the problem was out of control and alcohol abuse was a prominent culprit.
“Parents were leaving their children to fend for themselves.”
“In Etete last month a 19 year old mother left her three children aged two, six and five months old over night while she spent time with her boyfriend.
“The next day in the afternoon a neighbour broke down the door to rescue the children, but by then the 5 month old child had died.”
The police officer said two other cases stood out for him.
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“In February two year old twins were found to have been neglected by their father.
“They were found in a shack with burn wounds from boiling water.
“Just two months ago in Shaka’s Head a three year old child was reportedly raped by a 36 year old man.”
Attempting to tackle the problem at a grass roots level the KZN department of community safety called together about 300 Etete residents to the community hall yesterday.
Stakeholders from social crime prevention, community safety, advocates, the health department and those who handle child abuse cases locally addressed them.
The purpose of the meeting was to educate residents on the dangers of leaving minors unprotected.
Captain Pillay said they were urging the public to report cases of neglect and abandonment.
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