Police chief delays court order

‘I mourned, buried the wrong baby’


Zizipho Ranuga, faced the trauma due to uncertainty that she had buried the right corpse of her baby, Lucendo Ranuga in Mayfield, Daveyton.


It is alledged that an Ekurhuleni mother might not spend her christmas well as she is stuck with the thought that she buried the wrong child.


A week after the mother gave birth, she was kind of forced to accept the body of a dead baby at the Far East Rand Hospital in Springs, Ekurhuleni, in May.


Zizipho Ranuga, 25, yesterday explained to Sowetan that she had gotten a court order from the South Gauteng High Court instructing the national police commissioner Khehla Sitole to start the process of exhuming the baby and start DNA tests aswell so that they would know if she buried the correct baby.


“It’s going to be Christmas soon and I don’t know where my child is. I know that I buried the wrong child. I know my baby is out there somewhere, but I need the courts to help me to confirm that the baby I buried is not mine,” Ranuga said.


A high court draft order dated September 9 reflected that Sitole was in contempt of a judgment handed down on July 30.


“The second respondent [Sitole] must, within 2 days of the service of this order, take steps necessary to purge the contempt of the judgment handed down on July 30,” the draft order says.


“Should the second respondent fail to purge the contempt, the second respondent must file an affidavit within 5 days explaining why he should not be arrested/committed for being in contempt of the judgment handed down on July 30.”


Sitole did not follow the orders and it led to another order being issued stating that the national police commissioner’s failure to comply with the judgments constituted a violation of section 165(1) of the constitution.


However, on November 3, Sitole appeared before the courts with an urgent application to disagree with the order, but it was dismissed by court with costs.


Brig Mathapelo Peters, police spokesperson failed to comment at the time of going to print yesterday. Calls were made to her and messages were left on her phone but she never returned any of them.


Ranuga said: “I didn’t know that this would take so long. It’s been five months since the courts ordered the police to do something about this but they are refusing,”


The baby was buried in Crystal Park, Benoni, on May 8. The baby was kept in an incubator and needed more oxygen since there were complications in breathing caused by undeveloped lungs, the mother said the baby died after she had been discharged.


“I visited my son often, but on May 4, I went back to the hospital to visit my son and deliver breast milk. The nurse on duty pretended to be surprised that my son was not at the ward; then I was told my son was missing.”


A search for the baby was conducted and the nurse went into different wards looking for her son. “Another nurse came and said my son is similar to a baby who died on Friday May 1, and instructed me to go to the mortuary,” Ranuga said.


Ranuga said that the doctor informed her that the baby that died on May 1 had died due to brain problem which she was never told about before.


Ranuga said she decided to wait patiently to hear from the court.

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