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NOMZAMO IN CRISIS

Son (16) arrested after mother stabbed to death – drugs to blame, says small Cape Town community

Son (16) arrested after mother stabbed to death – drugs to blame, says small Cape Town community

A small community on the outskirts of Cape Town is reeling following the murder of a mother, allegedly at the hands of her only son. They blame the incident on the drugs scourge in the area.

Authorities arrested a 16-year-old boy accused of murdering his mother in Nomzamo, Strand, on the outskirts of Cape Town on Monday, 23 October.

The incident has sent shockwaves through the small community of Nomzamo, named after the late struggle icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. 

Police spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk said the circumstances of the incident are under investigation.

“Lwandle police opened a murder case on Monday morning following the death of a 46-year-old woman who was found with a stab wound to the neck in her home situated in Nomzamo. A 16-year-old juvenile was arrested and is due to appear in the Strand Magistrates’ Court soon once he is charged.” 

Drugs are suspected to have triggered the teen’s actions and his family admitted that he smokes crystal methamphetamine, widely known as tik in Cape Town’s streets.

Family members interviewed by Daily Maverick cannot be named as the incident involves a minor. 

The teen’s uncle said he received a call around 4am on Monday that something had happened to his sister. 

When he arrived at the house, he was met by scores of people, who had come to hear about the brutal murder of the 46-year-old woman, allegedly by her only son. 

“When I got here, he told us different versions of what really happened,” the distraught uncle said. 

“The blood had dried, which meant that my sister was killed before midnight and the boy slept next to the dead body until the morning when he went to tell the neighbours about an intruder.” 

He claimed when police arrived, they stripped the teen and found bloodstains on his body. After a brief interrogation by the police, the teen took out the knife that he allegedly used to murder his mother. 

“He had already washed the knife and I must reveal that my sister tried everything she could to save the boy. He was on drugs and he was always absent from school. My sister cared for her son. She bought him nice clothes and always protected him, but today the same son is responsible for her death. This death is hard for us to process.” 

At the time of the woman’s death, the family had just returned from burying the boy’s grandmother in the Eastern Cape. The family will now prepare for another funeral to be held in the Eastern Cape. 

‘Tragic incident’

Local ward councillor Xolani Diniso expressed sympathy for the family and said the incident highlighted the challenge of substance abuse in the area. “This is a tragic incident that has left all shocked as this community of Nomzamo,” he said. 

“The law must take its course so that there can be a strong message sent to young people involved in drugs. This is also the time for us as the community to unite and fight against the selling of drugs to young and vulnerable people. We are of the view that drugs triggered the boy’s action because his mother did everything for him.” 

Siya Monakalo from Ilitha Labantu, an organisation that advocates for the rights of women and children, said they are deeply concerned about the high prevalence rate of violence that is perpetrated against women in communities. 

“It is even more startling in cases where a son has the ability to commit such an atrocious act on his mother. This is a sad state of affairs and a lot more needs to be done to eradicate this scourge that is terrorising our communities.”

He called on organisations and governments to support young people to keep them away from drugs. DM

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