A 16-year-old form five student disappeared on Valentine’s Day and her family is now fearing the worst.
Zekerla Parbhoo left her Ste Madeline home on the night of February 14 telling her mother she would return shortly. She never did.
Relatives said they assumed the teenager went to a friend's house nearby but they became worried when, after an hour, Parbhoo had still not returned. They then searched their neighbourhood but could not find her.
According to reports, the teenager was seen once since her disappearance, walking with two men in Port-of-Spain.
Parbhoo’s sister Alisha Patterson, 26, told Newsday relatives had not stopped crying since last Friday.
“It is hard for everyone. My sister is only 16 years. She is just a baby and whoever she is with knows this is just a child. She is not capable of making any adult decision.”
An emotional Patterson said her sister was preparing for the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examination in May/June.
“We don’t know if these men came for her near to home and took her away. We don’t know how she reached in Port-of-Spain but we do know she is with these adult men. My sister does have no money so there is no way she could have reached that area without any money, so I believe they may have tricked her somehow and took her away.”
Patterson said what hurt her the most was that "every other week on the news" she heard incidents of young women turning up dead after missing for some time.
“I don’t want to wake up tomorrow and get a phone call that my little sister is dead.
"I just want to tell these men whoever have her, Zekerla is just a child. I am sure you all have little sisters and relatives. What would you do if you found out your 16-year-old sister was with a group of men for the past four days?
"Please, please I am begging you all send my little sister home.”
In tears, Patterson said, "Please, please if anyone sees her anywhere please call the nearest police station. She is just a child."
Zekerla is a student at the San Fernando East Secondary.
Police are investigating.