‘Ex-boyfriend’ arrested after woman, son found burnt to death

A 45-year-old man is expected to appear at the Moretele magistrate’s court soon, for allegedly setting a 29-year-old woman and her six-year-old son on fire in Suurman squatter camp, Hammanskraal.

The incident reportedly happened on Friday.

Sergeant Herman Moremi said it was alleged that a neighbour heard a serious argument inside a shack.

“Moments later the same man saw smoke coming out of the shack,” Moremi said.

“A man ran out before there was a gas explosion. Police followed up on the information about the description of the suspect who is apparently an ex-boyfriend of the woman.”

Mother and son that were allegedly burnt to death. Image: Supplied.

The man was arrested during the night at 11.15pm on Friday.

Moremi said the bodies of the woman and son were found burned after community members tried to save them by extinguishing the fire with water.

“The suspect will appear in the Moretele Magistrate’s Court in due course on two counts of murder.”

Last month, Cabinet raised its concerns about the spike in gender-based violence (GBV) cases across the country following the recent spate of murders of women and children.

The members of the Cabinet called on South Africans to unite and work together to stop GBV.

“Cabinet commends law-enforcement agencies for their swift action in arresting some of the suspects and has urged the agencies to continue working tirelessly to arrest all those involved in these gruesome murders.

“Cabinet is unwavering in its commitment to fully implement a range of interventions developed from the national strategic plan on GBV and femicide,” said the ministry in the presidency in a statement.

It was also announced that the bills meant to strengthen the response to GBV would be introduced to parliament by August, with the first Bill to be introduced this month.

The bills that will be introduced include:

  • The Criminal and Related Matters Bill to, among others, introduce stricter bail and sentencing provisions;
  • The Domestic Violence Amendment Bill which seeks to address the gaps and anomalies which have manifested themselves since the Domestic Violence Act came into operation in 1999; and
  • The Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Bill which seeks to extend the protection afforded to victims of gender-based violence and to introduce a new offence of sexual intimidation and to extend the ambit of the offence of incest.

This article first appeared on Rekord North and was republished with permission.

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