Private investigator Noel Pratten, who has been roped in to help find missing UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana, says while fake news regarding her whereabouts do more harm than good, he has to follow up on all the information he gets.
“We need to be thorough though in the clues we follow up on,” Pratten told News24 on Wednesday.
“While we need to work every clue we get, fake news about her whereabouts or her condition are inflammatory,” he said.
Pratten called on anyone with information to contact him directly. He also dispelled the rumour that her body had been found, saying it was not true.
Mrwetyana, 19, went missing on Saturday in the Claremont area. She lived at Roscommon House on Main Road in Claremont, which is leased by UCT.
The search for her has now entered its fourth day.
“The investigation is moving,” said Pratten.
This, according to him, was due to the “absolutely fantastic dedication of the two officers stationed at Claremont police station who are working the case, Sergeant Chetty and Constable Nkonki”.
“Participation from the public is needed … as much as possible,” he said.
Having worked a lot of missing persons cases, Pratten, who has been on the case for 48 hours, said Mrwetyana’s parents, stressed as they were, were doing their best to help with the investigation as well.
“It is most terrible for the parents,” he added.
Social media has been full of re-posts, shares and calls for assistance to help find Mrwetyana.
From Cape Town and East London to Port Elizabeth, information about her disappearance has been shared far and wide.
Anyone with information is requested to contact the Claremont police on 021 657 2240/43 or 079 894 1563.
Pratten can be reached on 084 762 5913 for any leads or information.