Family seeks answers after mom’s eight-year disappearance mystery
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Cape Town - The family of a mother, who has been missing for eight years, say the people who saw her last failed to report it to police or relatives, leaving the trail cold.
Now, nearly a decade after the disappearance, Olivia Classen’s family claims they have received no communication from police and that her missing persons docket could not be found at the police station when they made inquiries.
Olivia Classen, 32 (at the time of her disappearance and would be 39 now), also known as Malika Cupido, had been missing for two weeks before her family realised she had vanished in July 2013.
Classen, a mom of three, had been living with her husband and other persons, inside a backyard dwelling, in Voorbrug, Delft, at the time of her disappearance on July 6, 2013.
Classen’s family admits she was a drug addict, but said she cared for her children, aged 19, 14, and 10.
The child, who is ten, had been placed for immediate adoption as a baby, and is now living with her adoptive parents.
The case was reported to Delft police on July 26, 2013, after Classen’s relatives, her mother Matilda Classen, and others, discovered she had been missing for two weeks already.
Matilda lives in Pelikan Park, while Classen lived in Delft.
Matilda said the family needed closure because her daughter would never have left her children for such a long period.
The 14-year-old child is currently in the care of Matilda.
She said it had been through a causal interaction that they learnt Classen was gone.
“We do not know the husband and his family, and we do not have any contact with them,” said Matilda.
“At the time of her disappearance, I was still living in Delft but moved to Pelikan Park thereafter. My grandchildren used to pass this person, who used to live with Olivia, and kept asking him if he had seen her. He kept dodging them. This person then told the grandchildren that he didn’t know where she was. This person didn’t come to us and inform us that she was missing.
She said up until today, they do not know what happened to Olivia.
“I reported her missing after that, because she was not a someone who would stay away from her children and family. The family needs closure because, before I close my eyes one day, I want to know what happened.
“My daughter was on drugs but she was a mother who cared for her children.”
Classen’s cousin Rochelle Fritz said the family had been left frustrated with police who could not find her docket, and said they believed there was more to her disappearance.
“When we keep visiting the police station, they said the missing persons case docket for her is gone and when we asked to open a new one, they said no,” she said.
“How are they able to look for a missing person when the file and paperwork is gone?
“Why did they not allow us to open a new one?
“When we questioned where her photographs were, they said it was gone.
“For us, how can she just disappear and no-one knows what happened to her?” asked Fritz.
Fritz said they recently approached Western Cape Missing Persons Unit to investigate, and morgues and hospitals were searched.
“We gave a photograph of her and the team was asked to check the hospitals and morgues, but found no one fitting her description.
“They were the first people to actually help us and go and search the morgues.
“Why did the police not question the people she was last seen with?” asked Fritz
Classen’s family said they had no contact with her husband and were not sure where he resided to attempt to establish contact with him.
Candice Van Der Rheede, of the Western Cape Missing Persons Unit, said they were aware of Classen’s case and had not found any new information about her case
“We are understand that she was at home and disappeared,” said Van Der Rheede.
“We are trying our best to find information on her, but there is nothing popping up at the morgues or hospitals.
“The pandemic is making it harder because people are wearing masks, and it is harder for people to be recognised,” added Van Der Rheede.
Anyone with information can contact Western Cape Missing Persons Unit on 071 639 83 44 or 072 070 8661.