Three Limpopo Grade 10 schoolgirls were attacked while on their daily 3km walk home from school on Tuesday and two of them were raped.
The girls were walking from the Tshimbupfe Secondary School near Vuwani when two men approached them, wielding a knife and machete, and dragged them into the bushes at around 15:40.
The girls have to walk a distance of about 3km home from school every day.
According to a source, who does not want to be named, taxis and buses operate in the area but the pupils’ parents can’t afford to pay for transport. The provincial education department has been approached to assist with transport arrangements, but three years since the initial request, transport has not yet been provided, the source said.
The source said the men discovered that one of the girls was menstruating. They then allegedly put one of the other girls on top of the menstruating girl, and proceeded to rape her
The girls have received treatment and counselling at a nearby hospital.
Provincial education spokesperson Sam Makondo told News24 he is yet to receive a report from the district office.
“This is a matter that happened outside school hours and off the school’s premises.
“We are concerned when learners are violated when they are going to their respective homes.”
Makondo added that the department does, in some cases, provide transport to learners, but that the distance walked had to exceed 5km.
Vuwani SAPS confirmed that cases of assault and rape were being investigated and that statements had been taken from the victims. No one has been arrested.