Bergville family mourns kids entombed in fridge

2011-10-26 00:00

THE Ndaba family in the Kholakaze area, Bergville, are mourning the death of their two children who were found dead in a disused refrigerator in a neighbour’s yard on Monday morning.

Phumelele (5) and Sfiso (4) went missing on Saturday afternoon. They were last seen playing in the company of a group of children in the neighbourhood.

Their father, Dlezakhe Ndaba, said there was a traditional gathering in the neighbourhood and children were playing together.

He said his children were inseparable and would stick together even when they were with others.

The other children said the brother and sister had left for home while others were still playing.

Ndaba said his wife, Fungile, and neighbours searched for the children until late on Saturday evening, but in vain.

“I was in Johannesburg searching for employment when I was informed about the incident. I’m told that the search for my children resumed on Sunday, but without success. When I arrived on Monday they were found in an unused fridge at the neighbour’s yard when one neighbour decided to open it,” said Ndaba.

Both parents are unemployed and Ndaba said he wants to bury his children on Saturday, but cannot afford to.

“We’ve had a visit from the Deputy Mayor, Zamlandela Khumalo, who promised to speak to the authorities to see if we cannot be assisted in burying the children. I can’t do it on my own and what pains me more is the fact that I had to go and look for jobs away from home, and I come back empty-handed having to face the task of burying them. They were still young,” he said.

Attempts to get comment from the area Mayor Thulani Sibeko were unsuccessful.

Provincial police spokesperson Captain Thulani Zwane said an inquest docket has been opened.

“By now people should know the dangers of leaving disused fridges unlocked. If it’s not working, take the fridge to the scrapyard or keep it locked for the sake of innocent children,” said Zwane.

In a similar incident two children died and another two were hospitalised on Monday after they allegedly suffocated while playing in a trunk in an outside toilet at a home in Soweto.

• chris.ndaliso@witness.co.za

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