As the parents of a 14-month boy tried to absorb the news that their toddler’s nanny had helped kidnap him‚ his tiny voice and laughter was heard throughout the police press briefing on Friday.
The toddler’s mother‚ Mandisa Mlambo‚ said she and her partner Tshepo had trusted the nanny and felt terribly betrayed.
Siya Mlambo was snatched by two men from his home in Protea Glen‚ Soweto‚ on Tuesday.
Police Major General Free Kekana said the 30-year-old nanny and her cousins – a sangoma aged 22 and another man aged 25 – were arrested on Thursday night.
“Last night‚ while the team was interviewing the nanny‚ they received a call that a child might be recovered in eMdadeni in Newcastle. They proceeded immediately to Newcastle. They worked all night; they managed to get the child‚ safe‚ healthy and unharmed‚” said Kekana.
Mlambo said she and the nanny were tied up with a rope that during the robbery.
“She was there with me when I was crying. She was the one comforting me‚ so I am really out of words‚” Mlambo said.
“I didn’t see this one coming. I am still surprised even now. I just want to confront her and ask her why she did this to me.”
Mlambo said the nanny had always taken good care of Siya and “I treated like my flesh and blood.
“Every time when I go out I would take her along with me – I wanted to make her feel comfortable at my place. So now when they told me she was a suspect‚ and there were a whole lot of other things linking to the kidnapping‚ I was really shocked‚” the mother added.
The motive of the kidnapping is not yet clear. Mlambo said she has checked Siya and there was not a scratch on him. He was neatly clad in a white and blue T-shirt and blue jeans.
His jubilant father said he wanted to jump up and down when he heard that Siya had been found.
“I called my partner early this morning to check how she is. Immediately when she said Siya is here I felt like flying there to see what was happening‚” he said.
He said he was shocked that the woman they had trusted with their child and treated like family was apparently behind the abduction.
The three suspects are being held at the Protea Glen police station and will appear in court soon.