Cheryl Cole paid £18,000 for a metal statue.

The 30-year-old singer splashed out on the piece created by artist Willie Bester - known for his installations made of found objects - which shows a mother pushing her pram while her child holds a gun, to help portray the ''horrors'' of crime in South Africa.

A source told the Daily Star newspaper: ''Willie's art is about the violence and horrors of crime in South Africa.

''He makes scrap art sculpture and she's loving it.''

Cheryl bought a second home in Cape Town after spending time there soaking up the sunshine over last year's Christmas period and is keen to fill her new residence with native and ''iconic artwork''.

The source added: ''Cheryl is really getting into the culture here and she wants to support South African talent.

''Now that Cheryl has a second home here she is furnishing it with iconic artworks.

''She saw the Willie piece at the Mount Nelson hotel, where it's exhibited in the gardens.

''She completely fell in love with the sculpture, and snapped it up straight away.''