Video footage obtained by the Daily Sun depicting a 16-month-old toddler on a bathroom floor with her feet and wrists tied while struggling to get free, went viral yesterday.
Warning: Not for sensitive viewers
WMACA executive director Miranda Jordan Friedmann said the organisation was shocked and appalled by the footage.
“We applaud the person who exposed the cruel abuse of the toddler. However, we feel the footage should have been reserved for forensic investigation and the court to protect the toddler from being exposed in a video,” said Friedmann.
“But we recognise the power such footage has in warning parents of potential abuse where they least expect it.”
The cellphone footage had been recorded at the Petite Bumper Daycare centre in Rosettenville. The child was tied up for about three hours, according to media reports.
Police spokesperson Constable Rebecca Bila said no arrests had been made, as no case was reported. “The video was viewed by police, but we haven’t been able to find the crèche where it was said to have taken place. We are investigating,” said Bila.
“We do not have the address of the place, so haven’t been there. About the ‘SAPS saturation unit’ mentioned in the media, I don’t know anything about that,” she said.
Anyone with information can phone 8600-10111 or send an SMS anonymously to Crimeline at 32211.
Friedmann warned parents to place their children in the care of registered crèches.
“The department of social development should be monitoring all crèches to ensure the safety of children,” she said.
“Communities should report crèches that are not registered or not providing safe nurturing services to the children in their care.”
Meanwhile, a 19-year-old mother, arrested on Friday night after her 16-month-old baby was found wandering along the N1 highway near the Grasmere off-ramp, will appear in the Vereeniging Magistrate’s Court on April 15.
The unidentified woman will face charges of attempted murder, kidnapping and child abandonment.
The community safety department confirmed the child sustained no injuries, and is currently at a place of safety.