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Nine-year-old girl fighting for her life after being shot in EFF-ANC fight

Nine-year-old girl fighting for her life after being shot in EFF-ANC fight
Nine-year-old Grade 3 pupil Tsiamo Lebaka, who was wounded during a clash between ANC and EFF supporters at Juju Valley Settlement in Seshego. (Photo: Supplied)

The distraught parents of a nine-year-old girl who was hit in the head by a bullet during a clash between EFF and ANC supporters in Juju Valley settlement in Seshego, Limpopo, say their daughter is in a coma fighting for her life in hospital.

Tsiamo Lebaka, a Grade 3 pupil, is in a coma in the intensive care unit of the Polokwane Provincial Hospital after she sustained a bullet wound during a clash on Sunday afternoon between supporters of the African National Congress (ANC) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).

An unidentified 25-year-old man was also wounded.

In a video widely circulated on social media, supporters and members of the two political parties can be seen throwing stones and other objects at each other while a man in a black jacket on the side of the ANC supporters brandishes what appears to be a firearm. ANC members can be seen moving into the settlement while EFF supporters block their way.

Tsiamo, who was playing nearby, was struck in the head by a bullet. She was rushed to hospital by ambulance. Her mother, Tebogo Lebaka, who was at home at the time, was informed of the shooting by other children. Tsiamo’s father, Matikwe Mosomane, who works in Johannesburg, rushed home on Tuesday.

“The child is in critical condition in hospital,” Mosomane said. “She is not talking and nobody from the parties and government has visited our residence since the incident took place.

“All I want is for my daughter to get healed — she is a bright child who loves netball. If our politicians are genuine and peaceful, how can they carry guns when they go to the communities to campaign?”

Matikwe Mosomane, the father of Tsiamo Lebaka

Matikwe Mosomane, the father of nine-year-old Tsiamo Lebaka, who was shot and injured in a clash between EFF and ANC supporters at Juju Valley. (Photo: Rudzani Tshivhase)

Mosomane said they wanted those involved to at least take the girl to a private hospital. “On Monday, while I was at the hospital, the EFF leadership told me they are busy trying to get quotes from private hospitals to make sure that she is taken there,” Lebaka said.

Limpopo ANC spokesperson Jimmy Machaka claimed that EFF members started the fight by blocking them and throwing stones.

“Unfortunately, some of our members were heavily injured and some were taken to various hospitals for treatment. Everyone who was responsible for this act must take full responsibility.”

Call for calm

The EFF has called for calm in Juju Valley. The party issued a statement calling on EFF supporters and ANC leaders to allow free political campaigning in the area.

The EFF’s Limpopo convener, Godrich Gardee, condemned the violence by supporters and members of both parties. He called on police to investigate who fired the shots and arrest those responsible.

“The EFF remains committed to ensuring a peaceful, fair and democratic process as we move towards the elections,” Gardee said.

An Electoral Commission (IEC) provincial electoral officer, Nkaro Mateta, condemned the violence and reminded political parties they had signed pledges agreeing that they would allow all parties to campaign without interference or violence.

Juju Valley Settlement, EFF

Juju Valley Settlement at zone one in Seshego township was established by Julius Malema but lacks in-house water connections, electricity and proper streets. (Photo: Rudzani Tshivhase)

“We are convening an urgent engagement with the two parties to try to mediate between the two. We are also aware that cases have been opened with the SAPS and will allow them to investigate.

“We are hopeful that the two parties will find each other and allow the spirit of peace and free access without hindrance to all areas of Limpopo,” Mateta said. The two parties will meet with the IEC on Thursday.

Read more in Daily Maverick: 2024 elections hub

The Juju Valley settlement at Seshego Zone 1 was established by EFF leader Julius Malema several years ago. In a recent SABC interview, Malema said the Juju Valley model was a “best practice” SA could follow to address land redistribution.

Malema said the land had belonged to a white family, who agreed to give some of it to the community for settlement purposes. Residents say that since then the area has been regarded as an EFF stronghold.

ActionSA’s Ward 13 branch chairperson, Potego Shadung, said the area was a no-go zone for other political parties. “We do put up posters and they are later on pulled down,” Shadung said.

EFF election boards

Only EFF election boards are seen posted around Juju Valley Settlement at zone one in Seshego township. (Photo: Rudzani Tshivhase)

Inside the settlement, only EFF posters could be seen. A resident, who requested anonymity, said, “You can see even the government is not doing anything for us. We don’t have in-house water connections, proper streets and electricity. After the EFF takes over the government after the elections we are sure that Julius Malema will make sure that we have basic services.”

Meanwhile, police spokesperson Brigadier Hlulani Mashaba said they were investigating two cases of attempted murder in relation to the shooting and four additional cases, including malicious damage to property and contravention of Section 87 of the Electoral Act of 1998.

“The violence erupted during a campaign event between rival political parties, leading to an escalation that endangered the lives of people and damaged infrastructure. Preliminary investigation indicates that several other people sustained injuries after they hit each other with stones and several shots were fired,” Mashaba said.

No arrests have been made. DM


Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Greeff Kotzé says:

    “…the area was a no-go zone for other political parties.”

    People who are determined to limit and control which ideas their neighbours are exposed to, will always cause terrible outcomes. This is simply another form of book-burning.

    Insecure dogmatic fascist ideologues need to be shut down before they take root. Any political party wishing to campaign there should get a state-provided armed escort.

    • D'Esprit Dan says:


    • D'Esprit Dan says:

      Tragic that a young girl’s life hangs in the balance because intolerant political scum can’t abide by the rule of law. Where’s big mouth Malema now? Or Ramaphosa? I suppose it’s collateral damage Nomvula Mokonyane’s dirty voters so doesn’t matter once the votes have been tallied.

  • Denise Smit says:

    Stones are just as much murder weapons. The EFF who started this must be investigated. No areas are no go areas for other political parties. No political party visit to the home of the injured girl. How difficult this is if you are the guilty parties ,

  • Stanislav Zimela Nkosi kaMthembu says:

    It is time that South Africa realises that their nation is at war, requiring the requisite response. We are facing an extreme form of invasion by illegals, weaponised, hostile, belligerent; while we are polarised in manner that renders the nation’s response to this, markedly weak.

  • Malcolm McManus says:

    There are no words to describe this barbaric behavior of the EFF and ANC. A true reflection of the type of people who are members of these parties. Lets pray this little innocent life is spared and she makes full recovery. Truly tragic.

    • Ryckard Blake says:

      Anyone else feeling the mother should be charged for negligence, leaving her little 9-year old playing outside in the killing-fields that any confrontation between armed barbarians is bound to become?

      • Malcolm McManus says:

        I don’t know if this was just a spontaneous occurrence that happened without a planned march. It seems to be a farm type area so normal for kids to be outside playing. I would hate to want to persecute the mother under such tragic circumstances. Unlike the world I grew up in, we would leave home to play in the morning and cover distances of up to 10km or more and only come home at 4.30pm without our parents having to worry, the world has changed sadly.

  • Grumpy Old Man says:

    ‘On Monday, while I was at the hospital, the EFF leadership told me they are busy trying to get quotes from private hospitals to make sure that she is taken there’
    Is ‘getting quotes’ a consideration by the EFF leadership in pursuit of the lavish lifestyle they pursue? Do they obtain quotes from Gucci or from Whiskey merchants prior to making purchases? Or, is cost only a concern when an innocent little girl is fighting for her life from an incident which they caused? Let’s get quotes so we can place a value on an innocent human life and so we can determine whether she is worth it or not. The worst thing about this is that post elections these same two political parties will possibly look to work with one another in order to carve up the spoils. This little girl will be forgotten and no one will be held accountable (because that will also be a part of the deal which is arrived at)
    This is absolutely sickening

  • Rae Earl says:

    That little girl may survive. Will she be mentally impaired for the rest of her life? Do you think Julius Malema or Cyril Ramaphosa or Jacob Zuma gives a shit? They’ll carry on dishing out this type of crap for as long as they’re voted into parliament, election after election. Voters who keep them in power obviously couldn’t give a shit for a little girl’s life or well being either. If they did they’d vote DA or Multi Party Charter members rather than this maggot infested crowd of gravy train passengers.

  • Middle aged Mike says:

    When politicians are indistinguishable from gang bosses you’ll inevitably end here. They go about armed and with goon squads because ‘political’ hits are a key feature of what passes for our democracy. I hope the little girl makes a recovery.

  • Fernando Moreira says:

    The red fascists doing what the brown fascists did 90 years ago .
    This is tolerated in plain sight
    Hope the little girl has a speady recovery

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