50-year-old Jobulani Mlombo was on October 2, handed 17 life sentences for raping 17 girls at his initiation school in Mpumalanga, South Africe. Mlombo was found guilty of raping the girls, who were between the ages of nine and 17, within the space of 24 hours in August in 2012. He was also sentenced to 15 years in prison for three counts of sexual assault. The sentences, taken together, amount to 425 years.
“The couple enrolled 21 girls, aged between nine and 17 during winter in 2012. In the initiation school, Mlombo raped and sexually assaulted the initiates on 29 August 2012.”
Mlombo’s wife, Mapalase Khosa, was also handed a 21-year sentence, suspended for three years, for two counts of assault and one count of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
Mlombo was arrested on August 29, 2012 alongside his wife, Sister Mapalase Khoza (41). They have both pleaded not guilty to 27 rape charges, three sexual assaults and 19 counts of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
The girls testified that Khoza’s wife would wake them up at the initiation school and lead them into a dark room, where they were smeared with muthi and raped. They said they were told that this was “The Big Initiation” and that they would go mad if they ever told anyone.