Col Rudzani Rakhadani (in pink hat), station commander of the Tshaulu Police Station, celebrated her 59th birthday with friends, colleages, and the learners and staff at the Ri songo neta Day Care Centre for disabled children in Gaba village on Friday, 10 November. Photo: Silas Nduvheni.

Vhembe top cop celebrates birthday with disabled children

News in brief - Date: 18 November 2023


In celebrating her 59th birthday, Vhembe SAPS’s top cop, Col Rudzani Rakhadani, visited the Ri songo neta Day Care Centre for disabled children in Gaba village near Tshaulu on Friday, 10 November, where a big cake was cut and shared with the learners and guests.

Rakhadani said she had first developed a friendship with the centre in 2010, soon after she had been appointed as station commander of the Tshaulu Police Station, and she had not looked back since. “I always visit them and donate something. These are my special people, and they should be treated with dignity as they did not choose to be in the position they are in.”

She warned the learners to never get mixed up in criminal activities. “I don’t want to see disabled people like you arrested by the police for getting into trouble with the law. Crime doesn’t pay. If you work hard and concentrate on your education, you can reach the sky, despite your disabilities,” she said.

Rakhadani was joined by the newly crowned Miss SAPS Vhembe 2023, Sgt Rofhiwa Nangammbi, senior police officers, the social crime coordinators at Tshaulu Police Station, and the parents of the learners at Ri songo neta Day Care Centre.

The manager of the centre, Mr Lawrence Tshibalanganda, warmly welcomed Rakhadani’s idea of celebrating her birthday with the children at his centre. He described her as “an angel” who showed such compassion for children with disabilities.

Ri songo neta Day Care Centre is a non-government organisation, established in 1998 when many children with disabilities failed to get admitted to special schools around Thohoyandou, such as at Fulufhelo and Tshilidzini.

Tshibalanganda said that the late Mr Samson Mbedzi, who had first started the centre, had also been disabled and had always talked about creating a brighter future for children who suffer from disabilities.


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Silas Nduvheni