Sangoma may be imprisoned again

A Limpopo sangoma who married a 13-year-old girl might return to prison.

Court gravel. Picture: RSC Inc.

LIMPOPO - A prosecutor, who dropped charges against a sangoma arrested for marrying a 13-year-old Limpopo girl, has until the end of Friday to submit a report about the decision.

North Gauteng High Court Director of Public Prosecutions Sibongile Mzinyathi will then review the decision and may set it aside.

The sangoma is 44 years older than the girl and was initially arrested, but later released, when it emerged that both families had agreed on the marriage.

R5,000 lobola was paid ahead of the union and reports suggest the girl's family had used the sangoma to cure her epilepsy.

The National Prosecuting Authority's Bulelwa Makeke said Mzinyathi will consider the evidence.

"When he is satisfied, we will make an announcement of what his decision is."

Meanwhile, rights groups have slammed the decision to drop charges and have called it a blatant disregard for the law.

Meanwhile, government promised to closely monitor the case.

The Sowetan newspaper on Thursday reported how the sangoma was arrested for statutory rape, but later released by the courts.

But the decision to drop charges against the sangoma has been met with confusion and anger.

Head of communication at the Department of Women, Children and People with Disabilities, Cornelius Monama, said officials could not stand by and do nothing.

"We hope that this tragic violation of the child's rights will be met with the harshest form of punishment."