Potchefstroom lesbian teen rape case postponed

The case of a man accused of raping and seriously assaulting a teenage lesbian woman in Potchefstroom has been postponed to 17 July.

Mbali*, who was a minor when she was raped, was discovered by her school’s patrolling officer the morning after the incident, lying behind a soccer field between Promosa and Mohadin, back in 2016.

She had been severely assaulted and left unconscious in the veld by her alleged attacker, Alfred “General” Mabea. Mbali was taken to Potchefstroom Hospital where she was admitted into ICU for a number of days.

Mabea was on the run for nearly two years and was arrested on Wednesday 20 June in Randfontein, on Johannesburg’s West Rand.

The suspect first appeared in the Potchefstroom Local Magistrates’ court on 21 June and remains under police custody. His formal bail application was set to be heard by the magistrates’ court on 26 June, but was postponed to mid July as requested by the defence.

Mabea’s arrest has been welcomed by Action for Social Justice International (ASJI) and OUT’s Love Not Hate campaign, who provided support to the victim, monitored the case and followed up with investigators. (Read about our field visit to the area here.)

According to ASJI, the matter has been classified as Schedule 6 (an extremely serious offence). This means it will be very difficult for the suspect to be granted bail, unless there are exceptional reasons.

Furthermore, Mabea has been linked to other cases that he is wanted for and that makes him a serial suspect based on the information held by the South African Police Service.

Mbali’s rape and assault happened just a few weeks after the nearby murder of Lesley Makousa, a 16-year-old Potchefstroom learner who identified as gay. His killer, David Shomolekae, was sentenced to life imprisonment in August last year.

ASJI is calling for members of the LGBT+ community and their allies to support Mbali and the case against her alleged attacker in the coming months.

Mbali* is not the real name of the victim. This article was first published on Mambaonline.com.