The mood among the people gathered outside the Roodepoort Magistrates’ Court was one of quiet optimism as they waited for a bail hearing to start on 26 March, Roodepoort Record reports.
“Even though we have not heard any news about Lee’s whereabouts in more than a week, we try to stay positive. We try to laugh often, as that is what keeps us going, otherwise we would have broken down a long time ago,” said Estelle Delport.
READ MORE: ‘We won’t stop until Lee is found’
Family members and friends arrived in their numbers at the court, where Kaylah Mentoor’s boyfriend was due to apply for bail.
“He was the last one who saw Lee when he was supposed to drop him off at his grandmother’s house in Roodekrans, and he was the one who handed Lee over to two strangers claiming to be family, resulting in him being arrested on a charge of child neglect,” Delport said.
Three-year-old Liyaqat ‘Lee’ Adams was last seen on 16 March, when he was allegedly abducted by two strangers in front of his grandmother’s house.
The group also held up flyers showing the missing boy’s photo, while chanting, “Bring back Lee!” and “Justice for Lee!”, before court proceedings got under way.
Family members spoke to the Record outside the court, appealing for the safe return of three-year-old Lee.
“Liyaqat is not just my grandson, he is like a son to me. I have two other boys, aged 13 and nine years, and he is like a little brother to them – he has grown up with my children. I do not have three children, but four, as he has been part of our family since he was born,” said Shenaaz (Heidi) Botha, Lee’s grandmother.
She added she wanted to remind people that Lee was not just another missing child – he is part of a family that loves and cherish him.
Kaylah Mentoor, Lee’s mother, also spoke to the Roodepoort Record for the first time, and said emotionally: “Lee was my saviour, and his birth changed my life. I am so lost without him, and just want to hold him in my arms again. I just want my little angel back.”
A community worker from the Democratic Alliance, Ann Adams, was among the supporters and said: “Crime against children has no boundaries. Your child is my child, and, even though we might have different political views, we believe that children need to be respected, loved and cherished.”
When they sat down in Court J, they all pinned their flyers to their chests while Mentoor’s boyfriend’s bail application was heard.
The hearing was postponed to 11 April for a bail application.