Boy, 4, returns to SA after mom arrested for drug possession in Mauritius

A four-year-old boy who was travelling with his mother when she was arrested in Mauritius has returned to SA, with the help of the government.
A four-year-old boy who was travelling with his mother when she was arrested in Mauritius has returned to SA, with the help of the government.
Image: 123RF/Artit Oubkaew

A four-year-old South African boy who was travelling with his mother when she was arrested for alleged drug possession in Mauritius last month has returned to the country.

This is according to Patricia Gerber‚ who heads advocacy organisation Locked Up in a Foreign Country. She shared the news on the organisation’s Facebook page on Tuesday. 

Gerber said the department of international relations and co-operation (Dirco), the department of social development and SAA had returned the child to SA.

“He is now with his grandmother and family,” she said. 

Dirco has been approached for comment. This article will be updated when its response is received.

The child's mother was arrested at an airport in Mauritius on September 15. She was reportedly found to have swallowed a stash of heroin. The woman was taken to hospital, where the drugs were retrieved. Her child was placed in the care of the Child Development Unit.

A Facebook account, believed to be that of convicted drug mule Nolubabalo Nobanda, who recently returned to SA after eight years in jail in Thailand, was among those who expressed dismay at the child’s involvement in the case.

Nobanda stressed that these incidents had far-reaching consequences. 

“These arrests are not just about the mule. What about the generation of children who are separated from their parents ... and this madness... will stop only if we take an honest look at the problem and know that both officials and offenders must work together to find solutions,” Nobanda wrote.

Nolubabalo Nobanda has weighed in on the situation around drug mules.
Nolubabalo Nobanda has weighed in on the situation around drug mules.
Image: Facebook / Nolubabalo Nobanda

The mother was one of two South Africans arrested in Mauritius last month. 

According to Mauritian website, https://www.lexpress.mu, another woman was arrested on September 17. 

She allegedly had drugs concealed in her private parts. The report said she co-operated with police, leading to a sting operation which resulted in the arrests of two other foreigners, who were to receive the drugs from her.


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