Khayelitsha resident Vumile Mroxisa has been having sleepless nights after he learnt that his picture had been doing the rounds on social media, linking him to a syndicate of foreign nationals who are accused of abducting young girls in Khayelitsha and other parts of the province.
Mr Mroxisa told Vukani that he was shocked when he got a call from his sister informing him that his picture had been circulating on Facebook and WhatsApp.
The 25-year-old father of one said the post contained his photo, his name, the community he came from and claims that he was among the people in Khayelitsha who were working with foreign nationals to abduct young girls. The message warned that people should immediately inform police if they saw him.
He said he nearly fainted when he finally saw the post, which had started circulating early in May when he was not active on Facebook.
He only saw the post early in June, he said, after he heard about the post and re-activated his Facebook account so that he could see it. He said he was still trying to figure out who had created the post and why they had done so.
His father, he said, has moved to Worcester because the matter has caused him so much stress.
“My reputation has been ruined by this post. Woman and child abuse is a big issue facing the country. As a father I completely understand that this is a very important issue.
“People who do not know me will take that this is true. My family feared for my safety and the safety of my child,” he said.
Mr Mroxisa said he was afraid to go out, fearing that people would recognise him from the post and wants to assure the people of Khayelitsha that he has never been involved in any form of crime or the abduction of young girls.
“I’m appealing to anyone who thinks this is a joke or did this to get back at someone… please do not do this and it’s not a joke,” he said.
He was, however, grateful to those who had commented on the post, pointing out that it was only a rumour.
He said he had opened a case at Lingelethu police station so that he could clear his name.
Lingelethu police station spokeperson Constable Xoliswa Nyalambisa confirmed to Vukani that an inquiry had been opened at the station and urged people not to spread fake news about other people as they could be arrested or fined.