By Krishnee Naidoo
Spokesperson for the father of the Phoenix girl (4) beaten by her mom and her boyfriend said the dad is distraught and is fighting tooth and nail to get custody of his daughter once she is discharged from hospital. In an interview with the Phoenix Tabloid, the spokesperson, who wished to remain anonymous, said the injured child is in a stable condition but is unable to walk due to the severe injuries to her legs. “Baby has her dad by her side. She is slowly recovering. We are aware that the video of baby’s beating has gone viral but our concern and especially her dad’s concern right now is her recovery and that he gets to take her home. We are shocked that her mother, who beat her up and caused her so much pain, was allowed to visit her. How could this be allowed? We welcome the news that the couple’s bail can be revoked and that the charges can be upgraded to Attempted Murder. We want justice for our baby. She needs to be with her family, her dad, showered with love,” the spokesperson said.
“Baby did complain previously about ill-treatment at the hands of her mum’s boyfriend. Interventions were attempted but failed because her mum always disregarded the claims and said baby was lying. Social workers were contacted. Baby said her mum’s boyfriend rubbed soap in her eyes and he made her sleep on the floor which she said was so hard and hurt her body. She said as she slept on the floor he would pass her and kick her. Baby also said that her mum’s boyfriend often locked her in the toilet,” the paternal family spokesperson added.
It is believed that it was the child’s recurring ‘wetting herself’ issue that sparked the boyfriend and the child’s mum’s anger and fury and subsequent violent assault of the little girl.
UPDATE: Call for couple in ‘child beating case’ to be revoked
Community activist Des Moodley told the Phoenix Tabloid that the prosecutor in the case has been approached with a request for the bail of the couple involved in the senseless beating of a four-year-old girl to be revoked. The child’s mother is one of the accused with the second accused being her boyfriend. Moodley added that the charge of Assault GBH will change to Attempted Murder.
Phoenix SAPS communications officer, Cpt L Naidoo, said, the charge could possibly change and the matter was being discussed but was unable to confirm at this stage.
The video of the brutal beating has gone viral on social media after the related story broke in the Phoenix Tabloid on Tuesday.
Moodley said the little victim is on the road to recovery. He added that since the release of the video, the community is baying for the couples’ blood and they need to be in custody so that justice can prevail for the battered little girl.
Video: Toddler (4) hospitalised after beating
Allegations of child abuse have reared its ugly head again after a four-year-old Phoenix girl was admitted to hospital with critical injuries that she sustained, allegedly at the hands of her biological mother and her mom’s boyfriend.
Both, the mum and the boyfriend were arrested on Wednesday, 28 February. They are said to be out on bail, currently. The toddler was admitted to hospital with a blood clot on her brain, internal injuries and swollen legs. She is said to be making a slow recovery. The identities of the child and parents’ cannot be revealed to protect the little victim.
Speaking to the Phoenix Tabloid, director of the victim support centre, known as, Voice (Victim Outreach Information Centre), Alvin Brijlal said, “This is yet another traumatic case of gross violence and abuse against a mere toddler. It is heart-wrenching that this innocent child is laying in hospital with brutal injuries meted out by her mum and the mum’s boyfriend. No child should have to suffer this kind of pain or torture, ever. It broke me to have to see her in the condition that she was and when I watched the video of the abuse at the hands of her mum while the boyfriend recorded it, I was horrified. I knew that we had to do everything humanly possible to reach out and save this little soul.”
Phoenix SAPS communications officer, Cpt L Naidoo, said, “An assault GBH case has been registered at the police station. The 25-year-old female complainant alleged that she was assaulted by her 20-year-old boyfriend who also assaulted her four-year-old daughter when she tramped his shoe. The boyfriend beat the child and then hit her with a force that she hit her head against the cupboard. The complainant further alleged that her boyfriend threatened to kill her and her daughter if she did not assault the child whilst he recorded it.”
“Both the complainant and her boyfriend were arrested and charged with assault GBH. They appeared in Verulam Magistrate’s Court and were released on bail of R3 000 each. They will re-appear in court on 11 April. Phoenix FCS Unit is currently investigating further,” added Cpt Naidoo.
In an interview with the child’s father, he told the Phoenix Tabloid, that he was unaware of the abuse until he found out that his daughter had been admitted to hospital.
“My daughter was admitted under a different surname. I then found out that she was in a critical condition and was only allowed to see her days after she had been admitted to hospital. I had to fight to be allowed to see her. Investigations revealed that the abuse has been going on for a long time. My daughter has been beaten because she has a urinating problem and wets herself. The beatings stemmed from that. She has been beaten badly so much so that she had to be hospitalized this time. And sadly, her mother stood by and watched it happen and has now become an accomplice to the assault on her own child,” the shocked dad said.
Brijlal added, “I was informed by a family member of the boyfriend about the abuse. I then found out the child’s name and traced her to hospital. It was quite a mission getting a case opened. The mother denied any knowledge of the abuse and is believed to have said that the child fell off her bicycle whilst also teaching the child to repeat the same lie.”
“I then explained the seriousness of the situation to the mum and she confessed that her boyfriend was behind the beatings. A mention of a recorded beating on video grabbed my attention and I tried my best to get hold of the recording. When I viewed the footage, I was appalled. I could not believe that a mother would treat her baby-girl in that manner. Kicks and blows whilst her boyfriend filmed the heinous attack,” said Brijlal.
“We need to as a community expose this scourge of abuse against our children. We need to be their voice. These monsters who hurt innocent children need to be exposed. This little girl tugged at my heartstrings when she said she loves being in hospital because the doctors and nurses care so well for her. Imagine the pain of her reality that faced her at home. Every child must be spared from this atrocity of abuse,” said Brijlal.