‘I tried to get help but was sent packing’
THE mother who chained her son to keep him safe has tried to get assistance at the Bosasa Youth Development Centre, but says she was turned away and told her son could only be admitted after being referred by the courts. “Essentially he had to be arrested, charged and sentenced before they could take him in.”
But according to Sihle Ngobese, spokesperson for Social Development MEC Albert Fritz, “Admission of children to treatment centres is subject to the implementation of the Children’s Act 38 of 2005, which can move a child to temporary safe care without a court order.”
The department has “asked social workers from the local office and from the department’s Substance Abuse Programme, to look into the matter”.
The mother has also tried sending him to relatives, including his father in the Eastern Cape, but he was sent back.
Patric Solomon, director of Molo Songololo, a child protection organisation, said: “The mother must seek help; she must have support from her family and community, and the child must be reported to Social Development for consideration to be placed in a drug detoxification and treatment programme.
“If the department can’t help, she must go to the Children’s Court for her child to be placed in a ‘place of safety’ and to be put in a drugrehabilitation programme.”