Family of slain Eskom employee meet with dead flies and ‘unbearable’ stench during visit to where body found

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The Yende family and community members went to the substation on Wednesday to picket “peacefully” to get Eskom to tell them what exactly happened to Thembisile Yende.

Thembisile’s body was found 13 days after she had gone missing. Her body was found in a store room next to Pieterboth substation.

Although it started peacefully‚ the picket turned chaotic when a group set fire to the grass adjacent to the substation.

Car owners had to quickly remove their vehicles as the fire spread quickly across the area.

The office where Thembisile worked as a trainee technician was locked and the branded white Toyota Hilux bakkie she drove was parked next to it.

Her family said she worked alone on the site and would communicate with her colleagues in other substations via email or phone.

Members of the police escorted the Yende family to the office Thembisile occupied. They were‚ however‚ not allowed to go inside the premises as the police are still conducting their investigation.

“There is an unbearable stench coming from that room. You can imagine if someone spent 10 days in a room after they had died. We could see dead flies strewn on the floor‚” said Thembisile’s cousin Bongi Yende.

Bongi questioned how the bakkie Thembisile drove was “neatly” parked on the side of the building‚ when she was “generally paranoid”.

“Thembi would never have parked her car like that. She would have parked it in front of her office so people could see she was working. She was paranoid.

“Whoever parked that car was hiding it.”

“This whole story surrounding Thembi’s death doesn’t add up. On the day she was last seen‚ the security apparently left early. Why?” asked Moses Yende‚ Thembisile’s other cousin.

Mboneni Yende‚ the family’s spokesperson‚ said they were still looking for answers from Eskom.

“We were hoping to meet them here today‚ but they did not come. We still want answers. We want the footage.

“If she wasn’t found the day after she was missing‚ why was she only found on the 29th [May]?

“The police came here with dogs but they did not find her. Why? If they missed that room‚ why?” asked Mboneni.

“As a family we are blind. We are heavy hearted. Are you telling me they did not smell the stench?”

Mboneni said the family will‚ after Thembisile’s memorial service on Thursday‚ go to Eskom’s head office in Megawatt Park to demand the answers they believe they deserve.

“We want answers before Thembi is buried. All we want is for them [Eskom] to sit down with us and give us the answers we want‚” he said.

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