Police are hunting for a man who allegedly burnt and beat his girlfriend’s one-year-old child to death while babysitting her.
On Sunday, doctors declared little Asheeqah Scott brain dead at Red Cross Children’s Hospital.
Asheeqah was admitted to hospital on Saturday evening with severe cigarette burns to her arms, legs and bum, and scratches and bruises to her face and body.
Yesterday, while preparing for her burial in Kalossie Street, Roosendal, Delft, her devastated mother Shakiera Scott, 27, says she left Asheeqah with her boyfriend.
Shakiera, who also has a four-year-old daughter, from a previous relationship, began dating her 31-year-old neighbour five months ago.
She says although he was a drug addict, she often left her baby with him when she did housework, and the same thing happened on Saturday afternoon.
“I was busy cleaning and asked him to watch her for me,” she says.
“He often looked after Asheeqah for me and would take her with his family when they went on outings.
“But when I went around the evening to fetch her, I saw they weren’t there.
“When I went back a second time, I found him with the child and immediately saw something wasn’t right.”
Shakiera says she became hysterical when she saw bruises on Asheeqah’s face.
“I said he must take the child to hospital but he smacked me and asked why,” she says.
“There were blisters on her lips.’’
In her state of shock, she ran out to call her family, leaving Asheeqah behind.
Her aunt Janap Jacobs, 40, says she and her husband rushed Asheeqah to Red Cross, where the child was declared brain dead.
Asheeqah was a premature baby and could not walk or talk properly yet.
“They did a scan and saw there was swelling on her brain,” says Janap.
“She had scratches in her inner thigh but there was no sexual abuse.
“The doctors could see this was no accident, she was beaten to death. ”
Police spokeswoman Constable Noloyiso Rwexana said: “A death inquest case is under investigation. A post-mortem will be conducted to determine cause of death. No one has been arrested at this stage.”