Family relieved as Anathi is found

A 20-year-old Kraaifontein woman reported missing two weeks ago has been found… more than 1000km away in Mthatha, leaving her family puzzled.

The last time they saw Anathi Sikhafungane, from Wallacedene, was when she left for night school classes in Bloekombos on Wednesday September 12.

The family’s harrowing ordeal began when they received a chilling message from her alleged kidnapper: “She is still alive. I won’t hurt or kill her. I just want to make money with her.

“She is so sweet. When I am done with her, I will tell you where you must go and fetch her. I’m not that bad, I just need money.”

The family turned to the media, pleading for anyone with information to come forward. They said they had not had not had help from the police.

Anathi’s uncle, Michael Sikhafungane, said on Sunday: “We are overwhelmed and can’t believe she has been found. She said that after classes on the 12th she was accompanied by her classmates to (hitch)hike.

“A Toyota Avanza stopped and a woman insisted Anathi get in.w The woman offered her a drink and that was the last thing she recalls before waking up in a room with no windows and other girls.”

He said that on Thursday night his niece had woken up in another car with men and had seen Mthatha road signs.

“They left her in a field, but she walked to get help. Luckily her phone was with her so she called our family on that side.”

A case of kidnapping has been opened, said the Pink Ladies missing persons organisation.

Kraaifontein police’s Constable Jenna-Lee Wanza confirmed that Anathi had been found on Thursday September 27, but would not comment further.

“The station’s detectives are dealing with it,” she said.