A 49-year-old former gardener at Boyei Primary School has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for raping a 14-year-old former deaf student of the same school.
During trial it emerged that the accused person, Oreeditse Kabo on the 3rd of September 2016 invited the minor who was accompanied by her two male classmates to his place where he later told her colleagues to leave the victim behind.
It is said that he then took the victim to a different house, where he ordered the minor to undress before forcefully having sexual intercourse with her using a condom. It is said that the victim at the time was on her monthly period.
Court also heard that the following morning of September 4th Kabo offered the victim water to bath, and thereafter gave her P50.00 and bought her fat cakes while on her way to school.
The first witness Lindy Mapolanka who was the complainant’s sign language teacher revealed that on the day of the incident they realised that the complainant and her two friends were missing from school and a search for the student was subsequently launched.
She noted that they later found the complainant’s two friends who claimed no knowledge of her whereabouts. Mapolanka revealed that the minor who had been missing from the previous day arrived at school in the morning and told her that she had been with accused, who she said forced her to have sexual intercourse with him, adding that this was despite her resistance and that she was on her period.
In his defence during trail Kabo who pleaded not guilty claimed the victim and her friends came to his place indicating that the victim was assaulted by care takers at school and they wanted him to take her to her father.
He further argued that after failing to locate the victim’s place he took her to his brother’s place for interpretation since he did not understand sign language. However, Kabo noted that his brother was not home and they waited for him till it was dark but eventually offered the complainant accommodation to spend the night. He said he gave her a sleeping bag and slept on the same bed with her with their clothes on.
The accused person denied forcing himself or having sexual intercourse with the complainant adding that he gave her water to freshen up before going to school. He also said he gave her money which she had requested to buy sanitary pads and bought her fat cakes on her way to school.
Maun Chief Magistrate Thebeetsile however dismissed the accused person’s defence noting that the accused person took the minor to a secluded place to have sexual intercourse with her without disturbance.
“Why did the accused person send the victim’s friends to school without her? Why did he not take her back to school after failing to locate her father?” Mulalu questioned the accused person’s defence during trail.
Delivering sentence Mulalu said court took into consideration that in his mitigation the accused person pleaded for a lesser sentence as he said he was a sole bread winner at his home noting that he solely takes care of his virtually impaired mother.
“The court also took into consideration that rape cases are prevalent in this jurisdiction hence a stiff sentence is necessary to help curb potential offenders,” Mulalu said.
Mulalu indicated that such offences have a potential to negatively affect government’s efforts to combat HIV/AIDS transmissions. “Therefore the accused person is sentenced to 10 years in prison which shall take into account the 34 days he spent in prison whilst he was still awaiting sentence,” Mulalu concluded.