Children held illegally at detention centre
Dozens of children have been illegally detained at
Lindela Repatriation Centre in Krugersdorp, a report by medical humanitarian organisation Doctors Without Borders (MSF) reveals.
Private security company Bosasa has run the Lindela Repatriation Centre, including its clinic, since 2007. Services provided by Bosasa at Lindela are allegedly poor — a 2016 MSF report shows some detainees have been denied lifesaving care.
Seven suspicious deaths in 2015 still haunt the halls of the detention centre.
The MSF document reveals that, in five of the seven deaths, people had consulted the clinic multiple times — only to be given headache tablets as their conditions worsened.
Home affairs spokesperson Thabo Mokgola has denied that children are detained at Lindela. But since 2016, an MSF paediatrician identified about 50 minors there.
The children were transferred to places of safety with the help of the department of social development.
Without a more in-depth screening process, the international organisation warns that minors could still be slipping through the cracks. New arrivals to the detention facility are also not examined to determine whether they may have tuberculosis (TB) or HIV.
Lindela has a dark history of human rights abuses.
The South African Human Rights Commission has accused the centre of abusing detainees’ rights in investigations spanning almost 20 years.