‘LionMama’ now fears ret­ri­bu­tion

The Herald (South Africa) - - NEWS - Petru Saal

THE wo­man dubbed #LionMama‚ who no longer faces crim­i­nal charges for stab­bing to death her daugh­ter’s al­leged rapist‚ must over­come a new hur­dle – fear of ret­ri­bu­tion.

There was a sense of eu­pho­ria af­ter mur­der and at­tempted mur­der charges were with­drawn on Mon­day at the Lady Frere Mag­is­trate’s Court.

But now the East­ern Cape wo­man‚ who can­not be named to pro­tect the iden­tity of her daugh­ter‚ and her daugh­ter fear for their safety.

The mother’s le­gal rep­re­sen­ta­tive‚ Buhle Tonise‚ said yes­ter­day that the two women were wor­ried that rel­a­tives of the dead man or mem­bers of the com­mu­nity would seek ret­ri­bu­tion.

The mother and daugh­ter want to get away but they can­not af­ford to. Po­lice of­fi­cers have given as­sis­tance and as­sured the mother they would pa­trol the area.

There is ten­sion in the area over the way the man died. The young wo­man who raised the alarm‚ telling the mother that three men were rap­ing her daugh­ter‚ is be­ing blamed for the man’s death by his rel­a­tives‚ Tonise said.

“The one who went to call the mother is also a wit­ness in the case. The fam­ily had told her that she was the cause of him dy­ing. They told her if she hadn’t re­ported the rape, he would still be alive to­day. The fam­ily is still an­gry‚ they don’t have sup­port be­cause [oth­ers in the com­mu­nity] be­lieve that what the mother did was cor­rect‚” Tonise said.

“The fa­ther of the de­ceased also said that he would pre­fer that his son be pun­ished by the courts and not be killed.”

And the 27-year-old vic­tim of the al­leged rape had been tor­mented by guilt‚ fear­ing that her mother would be jailed for pro­tect­ing her‚ Tonise said.

Se­cu­rity at the wo­man’s home will be im­proved‚ thanks to a crowd­fund­ing page set up by Natalie Ken­drick af­ter she read about the mother be­ing ar­rested.

“The mother is wor­ried about her se­cu­rity. She doesn’t feel safe when she goes to bed at night‚” Ken­drick said.

The crowd­fund­ing page has raised more than R131 000.

Two men also ac­cused of rap­ing the daugh­ter were due to ap­pear in court yes­ter­day. – TimesLIVE

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