Defend Truth


For Khwezi: A Soul Forced to Silence


Lawrence Mduduzi Ndlovu is a Soweto-born Catholic cleric, lecturer, writer, poet and speaker, and arts enthusiast. He has written for Spotlight Africa, Daily Maverick, The Thinker, The Huffington Post, News24, The Southern Cross and The South African. He is a lecturer in the theology department at St Augustine College of South Africa. He is chairperson of the Choral Music Archive NPC, a trustee of the St Augustine Education Foundation Trust and an advisory council member of the Southern Cross Weekly. He was listed by the Mail & Guardian in the South African Top 200 Young South Africans list 2016. He is also the recipient of the 2016 Youth Trailblazer Award from the Gauteng provincial government.

The breaking of the news about the death of Fezekile Ntsukela Kuzwayo, famously known as Khwezi, has left many of us feeling saddened. Perhaps it is because there was a sublime hope that one day in the very near future her real voice would be heard. There was hope that she would emerge to gain back her life and her real name. The outcome of the trial matters very little. The social behaviour leading to and during the trial offered no support but shame to her very being. She did not deserve the treatment she received. She was forced into exile and pushed into the darkness of silence. The fact that she did not enjoy our protection should haunt us. I often think about other victims of rape and wonder if the treatment Fezekile got scared them into silence too. It must have. A poem by LAWRENCE MDUDUZI NDLOVU.

Take Me Home

Let OGumede take you home Fezekile

Them that never left your side,

Even when a people rose against you.

Let them.

Let OQwabe show you belonging Ntsukela

Them whose very blood brought you life,

Even when your very name was taken from you.

Let them.

Let OMnguni kaYeyeye bid you welcome sisi

Them who shielded you

When the nation neglected you,

Even when your very existence was threatened.

Let them.

Let OKhondlo take you home MaKhuzwayo

To restore to you everything lost.

Let them lead you to God

Where a nation’s tale of neglect and hypocrisy will be told,

Where the powerless were stripped of their very being

Let them.

Lala ngoxolo Phakathwayo! DM


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