Three people were arrested on Thursday after videos of toddlers at a West Rand crèche being slapped and hit, including at least one child with a broom, were shared on social media. Parents were fuming after seeing what had allegedly happened to their children at the Myne Maatjies daycare centre. Police spokesman Col Lungelo Dlamini confirmed to TimesLIVE on Thursday evening that three people had been arrested on allegations of assault. This was after several statements were taken from parents and witnesses, Dlamini said.
He said that investigations into the alleged abuse at the Myne Maatjies daycare centre started on Thursday. “A hard drive has also been seized for further investigation. More info will be provided as the investigation develops,” he said. TimesLIVE also confirmed that the department of social development in Gauteng was investigating. Angry parents of toddlers at the crèche in Randfontein have removed their children from the centre after videos of alleged abuse surfaced. A parent, whose name was removed to protect his child, said parents went to the daycare centre on Thursday morning to demand answers after seeing the videos of children allegedly being abused.
“The parents were bedonnerd [fuming] today and everyone is taking their children out of the school there. I am going to put my child in a different school. “A lot of parents have complained to say that their children are very restless in the evenings and that they have nightmares,” the father told TimesLIVE. In one of the videos, the kids are seen playing close to a jungle gym. A lady carrying a broom runs after one child and hits the child over the head. She walks away and continues sweeping the stoep. In a second video, a woman is seen changing one of the children’s nappies. A crying child is seen in a feeding chair behind her. A second woman walks towards the child and appears to hit her several times.
She then lifts the crying child out of the feeding chair and walks away with her. It is unclear where they go or what happens next. The parent said that his daughter, who is just over a year old, had came home with marks on her body before, but he thought it was just from playing with her friends at school. The father said his daughter has been at the crèche for about seven months. He said the videos were recorded by the next door neighbour.
“When you drop your child at school in the mornings and she starts crying, it’s not a nice thing. But you just think she is being naughty. But now you can see what the bigger problem was,” he said.
The owner of the daycare centre released a video on social media on Thursday afternoon apologising to the parents. In the video she admits hitting a child on his hands. “He is a very cute child, but he did scratch a little girl in her face. But I overreacted and something like this will never happen again.
“If it was my child I also would have been very, very angry,” she said. She said workers who were involved in two other incidents at the creche fled before action could be taken. “There will be disciplinary action and steps taken against them. Here … the children come first. Once again I just want to say I am truly sorry,” she said.
Gauteng social development MEC Thuliswa Khawe said she was shocked and angered after seeing the videos. “Let me state this categorically: we condemn such cruelty against children. This is saddening because it cannot be justified. “Let me add my voice to that of law enforcement and call upon anyone who may have any information about this incident to come forward. We cannot condone such actions,” she said. Khawe said she and her team would be visiting the families to offer their support. Police spokesperson Col Lungelo Dlamini said he had sent an investigating officer to the Randfontein police station to get details.
In video footage, at least three teachers can be seen slapping children at the Myne Maatjies day care. Two people have already given warning statements after they were identified taking part in the abuse. Videos taken of the abuse on Wednesday (21 August) has been widely circulated on social media. In the footage, at least three teachers can be seen slapping children at the Myne Maatjies daycare. Police’s Mashole Manamela: “The Department of Social Development will also be involved in this matter to verify if they are in compliance with the law. It has come to our attention that in terms of the investigation, necessary steps will be taken to arrest those who were allegedly involved.”
Tears of remorse, and an overwhelming sense that their many questions will remain unanswered. That’s how the parents of toddlers at a crèche in Randfontein, west of Johannesburg, described the way they felt on Friday. For these parents, whose children who were allegedly slapped by their caretaker and other workers at the crèche, the damage has been done. “How long has this been going on? My heart is in pieces,” a woman, whose name has been witheld to protect her children, told TimesLIVE on Friday. “You hear about these things on the news and people talk about these things, but you never think it could happen to your own children.” The mother-of-two said her daughters attended the daycare – one, now five, since she was three months old. Her second daughter, who is just over a year old, was seemingly assaulted in one of the videos shared online. “No child deserves this. We don’t even hit our children at home. Who gives someone else the right to hit our children?” The family paid just over R1,200 monthly to the crèche after receiving a discount for the two children, she said. The daycare’s owner and two employees were detained for questioning on Thursday. Col Lungelo Dlamini confirmed that they were released soon after. Dlamini said a hard drive had been seized to help the investigation.
On Friday morning, the gate at the creche lay broken in the driveway. A neighbour told TimesLIVE it was “ripped from its railing” on Thursday evening. “I just saw a bakkie pulling the gate from the railing. It was dark so I couldn’t see the number plate, but you could hear the little stones from the gravel hitting against the garage doors and windows. It must have been a very powerful bakkie to pull that gate over,” said the man, who asked not to be named.
A second mother told TimesLIVE that her one-year-old son joined the crèche in May last year after she had searched for the “perfect school for her baby boy”. “Every parent just wants the best for their child and I felt that we made the right choice when we chose Myne Maatjies because I knew a lot of parents whose children were also there,” she said. The woman said her child would often cry when they dropped him in the mornings, but things got better after a while.
A few months later her child returned from daycare with marks on his face, but they decided not to question these, thinking “he is a boy and that’s how boys are”. After it happened more frequently, her husband went to the school to find out what was happening.
The owner told the family there was a child at the school who was bullying their boy. “The owner spoke to us nicely and we decided that we did not want to disrupt his life, so we left him there. She assured us that everything was under control.” But, she said, her son would often return hungry and thirsty from daycare even though she had packed more than enough for him to drink and snack on. It got worse when their child cried for hours after being fetched from school.
She said she had sent the owner pictures of his behaviour. “He was just not the same boy anymore, but the owner told me it’s just a phase, I shouldn’t worry. “I told his father that something was not right. It was so bad that I started reading books to try to figure out what the problem was.
“My child lost his joy for life. He didn’t want to eat or sleep and also didn’t sleep properly and cried a lot. He started hitting us, and now we understand why, because the minds of children record everything.” The boy was removed from the school a few months ago and has since been looked after by his grandmother. “I am sad, angry and scared. My trust in people will never be the same when it comes to my children.”
The father of a girl who is just over a year old said she had come home with marks on her body before, but he thought it was just from the rough and tumble with her friends. The girl has been at the crèche about seven months. “When you drop your child in the morning and she starts crying, it’s not a nice thing but you think she is nust being naughty. But now you can see the real problem,” he said.
Video’s available on facebook
23 August 2019
The owner and two employees of the Myne Maatjies day-care centre in Randfontein were released after being detained on Thursday.. “They will not be appearing in court as they were taken in for questioning and released,” police spokesperson Col Lungelo Dlamini said on Friday. The three were arrested after videos of toddlers being “slapped” and “hit” with a broom were shared on social media. Parents were fuming after seeing what had allegedly happened to their children and on Friday, the front gate to the creche lay damaged in the driveway. In one of the videos, the children are seen playing close to a jungle gym. A woman carrying a broom runs after one child and purportedly hits the child over the head. She walks away and continues sweeping the stoop. In a second video, a woman is seen changing a child’s nappy. A crying child is seen in a feeding chair behind her. A second woman walks towards the child and appears to hit her several times. She then lifts the crying child out of the feeding chair and walks away with her. It is unclear where they go or what happens next.
Drie mense is Donderdag in hegtenis geneem nadat video’s van kleuters in ‘n crèche aan die Wes-Rand aan die lig gekom het wat wys hoe hul geslaan word waaronder minstens een kind met ‘n besem geslaan is.
Ouers is woedend nadat hulle gesien het wat na bewering met hul kinders in die Myne Maatjies-dagsorgsentrum gebeur het. Polisiewoordvoerder Col Lungelo Dlamini het Donderdagaand aan TimesLIVE bevestig dat drie mense in hegtenis geneem is op aantygings van aanranding. Dit was nadat verskeie verklarings van ouers en getuies afgelê is, het Dlamini gesê.
Hy het gesê dat ondersoeke na die beweerde mishandeling by die Myne Maatjies-dagsorgsentrum Donderdag begin is. ‘Daar is ook op ‘n hardeskyf vir verdere ondersoek beslag gelê. Meer inligting sal verskaf word namate die ondersoek ontwikkel,’ het hy gesê. TimesLIVE het ook bevestig dat die departement van maatskaplike ontwikkeling in Gauteng ondersoek instel. Befoeterde ouers van kleuters in die kleuterskool in Randfontein het hul kinders uit die sentrum verwyder nadat video’s van beweerde mishandeling opgeduik het.
‘N Ouer, wie se naam weerhou is om sy kind te beskerm, het gesê dat ouers Donderdag oggend na die dagsorgsentrum gegaan het om antwoorde te vra nadat hulle die video’s van kinders wat na bewering mishandel is, gesien het.
‘Die ouers was vandag bedonnerd en almal neem hul kinders daar uit die skool. Ek gaan my kind in ‘n ander skool sit. ‘Baie ouers het gekla dat hulle kinders saans baie rusteloos is en dat hulle nagmerries het,’ het die pa aan TimesLIVE gesê.
In een van die video’s word die kinders naby ‘n ‘Gungle Gym’ gesien speel. ‘N Dame met ‘n besem hardloop agter een kind aan en slaan die kind oor die kop. Sy stap weg en vee die stoep af.
In ‘n tweede video word ‘n vrou gesien hoe een van die kinders se doeke verander. ‘N Huilende kind word in ‘n voedingsstoel agter haar gesien. ‘N Tweede vrou stap na die kind en lyk asof sy haar verskeie kere slaan.
Sy lig dan die huilende kind uit die voedingstoel en stap saam met haar weg. Dit is onduidelik waarheen hulle gaan of wat daarna gebeur.
Die ouer het gesê dat sy dogter, wat net meer as ‘n jaar oud is, vantevore met merke op haar lyf huis toe gekom het, maar hy het gedink dit is net om met haar vriende op skool te speel. Die pa het gesê dat sy dogter ongeveer sewe maande in die crèche was.
Volgens hom is die video’s deur die buurman langsaan opgeneem.
“As u soggens u kind by die skool aflaai en sy begin huil, is dit nie ‘n lekker ding nie. Maar u dink net sy is stout. Maar nou kan u sien wat die groter probleem was,” het hy gesê.
Die eienaar van die dagsorgsentrum het Donderdagmiddag ‘n video op sosiale media vrygelaat en die ouers om verskoning gevra. In die video erken sy dat hy ‘n kind op sy hande geslaan het.
‘Hy is ‘n baie oulike kind, maar hy het ‘n klein dogtertjie in haar gesig gekrap. Maar ek het oorreageer en so iets sal nooit weer gebeur nie.
‘As dit my kind was, sou ek ook baie, baie kwaad gewees het’, het sy gesê.
Sy het gesê dat werkers wat by twee ander voorvalle by die creche betrokke was, gevlug het voordat daar opgetree kan word.
“Daar sal tugstappe gedoen word en stappe teen hulle geneem word. Hier … kom die kinders eerste. Ek wil net weer sê dat ek regtig jammer is,” het sy gesê.
Thuliswa Khawe, LUR vir maatskaplike ontwikkeling in Gauteng, het gesê dat sy geskok en kwaad was nadat sy die video’s gesien het.
‘Laat ek dit kategories stel: ons veroordeel sulke wreedheid teenoor kinders. Dit is hartseer omdat dit nie geregverdig kan word nie.
‘Laat ek my stem by die wetstoepassing voeg en ‘n beroep doen op almal wat inligting oor hierdie voorval het, om na vore te kom. Ons kan nie sulke aksies kondoneer nie, ‘het sy gesê.
Khawe het gesê dat sy en haar span die families gaan besoek om hul ondersteuning te bied.
Polisiewoordvoerder Col Lungelo Dlamini het gesê hy het ‘n ondersoekbeampte na die Randfontein-polisiekantoor gestuur om besonderhede te bekom.
Intussens eis die VF Plus-jeug in Gauteng vinnige en daadwerklike optrede van die polisie na ‘n ontstellende video aan die lig gekom het waarin kleuters by ŉ dagsorgsentrum in Randfontein aanhoudend op die speelgrond geslaan en rondgeruk word. Een van die kinders word selfs met ‘n besem aangerand.
Een kind word oënskynlik nege keer in 45 minute geklap terwyl die ander kinders histeries huil en skree.
Die VF Plus-jeug doen ‘n ernstige beroep op die Gautengse departement van maatskaplike ontwikkeling om die dagsorgsentrum dadelik te sluit en ondersoek in te stel of dit wettig bedryf word.
Die ouers van die betrokke kinders word ook versoek om klagte van aanranding by die polisie aanhangig te maak.
Soortgelyke gebeure is vroeër vanjaar by die polisie aangemeld toe ‘n werker van die Ninie Neurons-kleuterskool in Carletonville drie peuters in haar sorg na bewering wreed aangerand het. Die saak is nou oorgeplaas na die streekhof.
Die onmenslike optrede teenoor hulpelose kleuters wat in die video’s afspeel, kan nie geduld word nie en die skuldiges moet aan die pen ry.
Kinders van so ‘n jong ouderdom kan nie terugpraat nie, maar wel baie huil en selfs meer aggressief wees teenoor sekere mense se optrede wat hulle “mishandel” en slaan – watter kind sal nie letsels oorhou nie? Is goed dat die skuldiges aan die pen gery het, en laat dit vir elke ouer ‘n les wees, kyk na jou kinders se welstand op hierdie ouderdom en selfs later is en bly hulle kwesbaar. Hierdie moet nie ‘n skool wees vir kinders nie. Hulle moet streng vervolg word en die gevolge dra van hul dade. Moenie dink hierdie vrou wat kwansuis spyt is oor sy geslaan het, dat dit haar eerste aanranding was nie. Mens kan sien in die video hoe hard sy hierdie arme jong kind bykom, al het hy ‘n ander kind in die gesig gekrap. Daar is nog minder volledige toesig by hierdie kinders nie. Daar is beslis erge “gedragsprobleme” begin kweek by die skool as daar na die inligting van sommige ouers raaklees. Ouers in die algemeen moet hul kinders self opvoed en tugtig, nie hierdie spul wat dink hulle mag dit doen nie.