WINDHOEK – A 30-year-old mother of five children from Katutura was released on a warning by the Katutura Magistrate’s Court yesterday after appearing on a charge of child neglect.
The mother was arrested on Friday and her children were handed to the Gender-based Violence Protection Unit in the afternoon. This is the second time children are removed from the mother Martha Goses, 30, by the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare.
Goses was charged and her case was remanded to October 15 for further police investigation.
Goses’ first-born son who has been out of school since April this year will be placed back in his paternal grandmother’s care, who lives in Grootfontein.
The boy dropped out of school during the first semester when he came for the school holidays to his mother in Windhoek but she failed to send him back.
Two of Goses’ other school-going children are not attending school and it appears not all children have birth certificates. Her children are aged 12, seven, six, three and a one-year-old and the latter appears younger than his age suggests.
New Era was informed that at times the younger siblings were left in the care of the 12-year-old boy or the seven-year-old girl at their home in Saamstaan location in Katutura.
“I found the two youngest children naked on the bed in this cold weather this morning. You can see there are no blankets on this bed. I had to look for clothes and dress them,” said City Police Head of Domestic Violence Desk Superintendent Cesilie Kolokwe.
After searching for Goses she was picked up at the ‘bridge’ where she operates as a sex worker. Kolokwe said issues of child neglect are on the rise and called on people to report such cases.
Goses’ paternal aunt Maria Kasipu, who lives in the vicinity and other neighbours got tired of Goses’ gross abandonment of her children and informed the City Police who arrested her on Friday.
The City Police were accompanied by a social worker from the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare.
After listening to Kasipu’s concerns and complaints regarding the children they decided to arrest the mother.
“I am removing your children and charging you formally with child neglect,” the child ministry’s social worker Elizabeth Vial told Goses.
An emotional Goses begged to be given a second chance.
Her two youngest children will be taken to hospital for treatment as they look sick.
Kasipu further told the reporter that Goses has been failing to take her two youngest children to the clinic since April to get tested for tuberculosis (TB) as they are definitely unwell.
Kasipu, who runs a kindergarten and gets second-hand clothes as donations gave some to Goses for her children but she failed to wash them and instead discarded the clothes behind the house. Kasipu showed the reporter the heap of clothes Goses stored in a bin at the entrance of the house.
Goses only received an education up to Grade 7 and it appears life is also tough for her as the father of the four children is a habitual criminal who is in and out of jail. He is currently behind bars. The dilapidated house Goses resides in belonged to her deceased mother.
The house does not have electricity and water. They sometimes cook on an open fire outside.
During the visit to the house there was no food for the children whom Goses had left alone. But Kasipu said when she gives Goses baby formula she and her boyfriend “eat it up”.‘
A neighbour told New Era that if there is a petition to be signed for the children to be removed, they would do that. “I don’t agree with the children to be parted from their mother but she can get visitation rights,” remarked a concerned neighbour who has been giving the children some of the little food they have.
2019-06-18 09:00:30 2 months ago