Woman reveals she nearly killed herself after being raped by serial rapist who claims she was his girlfriend

A young woman recounted the trauma and devastation she experienced after being raped by Xolani Gcelu, a Tsolo man accused of being a serial rapist targeting young women and teenage girls in villages along the N2.

The woman, one of eight alleged victims, described the profound impact of the assault on her mental and emotional well-being.

“A girl’s body is sacred. So, when I was raped, I felt filthy, hollow and dead inside,” she shared.

The violation left her contemplating suicide, feeling stripped of her dignity and struggling to cope with the aftermath of the assault.

However, with the support of her family, friends, and church community, she found the strength to overcome the dark thoughts and regain her sense of self-worth.

The survivor, now a 24-year-old university student, reflected on her journey towards healing and resilience.

“Now I am doing my fourth year in university and thank God that I am still alive despite that traumatising and scary encounter,” she expressed to Judge Buyiswa Majiki.

Despite the profound impact of the assault, she emphasized her determination to move forward and focus on her future.

While the survivor has made progress in rebuilding her life, the court emphasized the importance of ongoing professional support and intervention.

Judge Majiki urged the survivor to seek additional counseling to address the lasting effects of the trauma she endured.

The court proceedings also revealed that two of the alleged victims had tragically passed away.

The woman who testified on Tuesday was 18 and doing grade 12 when she was allegedly raped while coming from evening studies at Sidwadweni near Tsolo.

“I was walking home from school when I was accosted by a balaclava-clad man on the evening of May 13 2019.

“He took out a knife. With the knife in my neck, the man raped me in an unfinished house.

“After raping me, the man demanded my cellphone and I handed it over,” she told the court.

Gcelu has pleaded not guilty to all the counts and claimed that all the alleged victims were his girlfriends, sex partners and people he had bought liquor for in exchange for sex.

The woman said she did not know him.

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