“(The accused’s) mother and uncle were here yesterday with other relatives to apologise for their son’s actions‚ ” Nombuyiselo’s aunt‚ Vuyelwa‚ told TimesLIVE on Wednesday morning.
“The family offered to help with the funeral costs and they gave us R5‚000‚” said the grieving aunt.
The two families were very close before the incident that rocked the Jouberton community near Klerksdorp in the North West on Sunday.
Nombuyiselo did not come home after her grandmother had sent her to borrow a few rands from a neighbour on Friday afternoon.
The family frantically searched for her for until her charred remains were found on Sunday morning‚ just a short distance from her home.
“When she went missing‚ we asked ourselves whether she was starting to be mischievous with boys but she wasn’t at that stage yet‚” her aunt said.
Nombuyiselo’s body was found by children who had been playing in the veld. Two tyres had been placed around her body.
The body had been stuffed in a sack.
Her alleged killer was arrested after he reportedly poured his heart out to a priest.
Nombuyiselo’s uncle‚ Kono‚ told TimesLIVE he had heard that the alleged killer had even failed to utter his niece’s name but had instead written “Nombuyiselo” on a piece of paper after confessing he had killed someone.
Nombuyiselo’s aunt‚ who put on a brave face as she relayed what had happened to her niece‚ said it must have been easy for the accused to lure her niece to her death because he knew her.
“But I wonder what went through his mind‚ because she probably screamed‚ calling him by name‚” said Vuyelwa.
The Nombeu family had accepted the apology from the alleged killer’s family.
“They told us they aren’t defending him. They don’t agree with what he did at all‚” said Vuyelwa.
“We can’t blame them for his actions.” But the community of Jouberton is fuming‚ alleging that the accused has committed other gruesome crimes before.
Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone confirmed the accused had been out on bail pending a charge of rape.
Nombuyiselo’s family urged the community to let the suspect’s family live in peace.
“The community shouldn’t harass the family. The criminal is behind bars. They didn’t send him to do the crime‚ neither are they protecting him‚” Vuyelwa said.
“The family is pained. The mother of (the accused) is terribly ill because of this‚” she added.
The suspect is to due to appear in the Klerksdorp Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday. Scores of community members‚ who are calling for him to be kept behind bars‚ are expected to be present for proceedings.