The 12-year-old girl that was held captive by a Nigerian man in a Sunnyside flat was left hungry for days and forced to take drugs by her abductor while being groomed for prostitution.
This was heard at the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Thursday where Augustine Obono, 36, appeared for a formal bail application.
Reading an affidavit from the investigating officer, state prosecutor Andrew Mphaga said a lady led the girl to the flat in September, where they slept. Upon waking up, the lady was nowhere to be found.
“She woke up and found the accused in bed. He forced her to make money by prostitution. When she refused, he assaulted and raped her. He locked her in a room where he left her hungry for days and also gave her drugs to get her addicted,” said Mphaga.
Obono laughed and smiled in the dock as the court heard how the child managed to escape when he forgot to lock the padlock on the door.
“She asked passers-by to open for her from the outside. When he returned, he fought with them and she eventually shouted for help and was released.
“She went to her father in Ga-Rankuwa where they opened a case and he was arrested at his flat on December 1.”
Upon visiting the flat, the investigating officer said two other ladies were found. Both admitted to being prostitutes.
Although Obono acknowledged the seriousness of the charges he is facing, he pleaded not guilty to human trafficking, rape and kidnapping.
Magistrate Lesetja Mphahlele denied bail, while also taking into consideration the Progressive Women’s Movement petition against the application, which was signed by over 250 people.
ANC Women’s League regional secretary Gogo Ndlovana said she was pleased that the court adhered to the community’s demands as over 100 Mamelodi men contributed to the petition.
Meanwhile, the young girl was still traumatised, and refused to rehash the events that took place during her two-month ordeal in the flat, her aunt told The Citizen.
“She is still traumatised and she is not well.
“She doesn’t like it when we ask questions about what happened and refuses to talk about it,” said her aunt