Coligny teen named 'Sorrow' laid to rest

2017-05-07 16:06
North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo and Education MEC Sello Lehari have attended the funeral of Mathlomola Moshoeu. (Jeanette Chabalala, News24)

North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo and Education MEC Sello Lehari have attended the funeral of Mathlomola Moshoeu. (Jeanette Chabalala, News24)

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Coligny - Friends, family and dignitaries paid their last respects on Sunday to the 16-year-old teenager who died after allegedly jumping off a moving vehicle in the North West town just over two weeks ago.

Mathlomola Moshoeu, whose name means "Sorrow", was buried at the Scotland Informal Settlement in Coligny where the funeral service was held.

Some relatives couldn't hold back their tears as Moshoeu's coffin left his home.

A relative, who did not want to be named, said the family was still reeling after his death.

"We are powerless," she said.

Two people have since been arrested in connection with the incident.

Coligny funeral AS IT HAPPENED: I have a problem with whites who practice their superiority - Mahumapelo

Racist town

Among those who attended the service were North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo and Education MEC Sello Lehari.

Mahumapelo told mourners that Moshoeu died at the "hands of white people".

"What the court must deal with is how they killed him - not whether it is them who killed him. The court must only deal with the 'how' part."

He said Coligny was not the only racist town in the province.

He also said racism in the province was manifesting itself through education.

"Black people are excluded on the basis of language… our young people can't access education because white people use Afrikaans."

The two farmers accused of killing the teenage boy are expected to find out on Monday whether they will be granted bail.

Eyewitness

Pieter Doorewaard, 26, and Philip Schutte, 34 allegedly caught Moshoeu stealing sunflowers.

"We are not against what the courts must deal with independently, from any influence but what we want the courts to do is not to start by saying there is confusion on what happened in as far as Matlhomola's life," Mahumapelo said.

On Friday, the State argued that it found it strange how the men had acted after the 16-year-old boy had died.

They have alleged that the boy jumped off their moving bakkie and broke his neck.

Prosecutor Khetheni Mudau argued that after the teen's death, the men reported the incident at the police station, but declined to go to the scene saying they had to attend to other business.

They were driving him to the local police station with their bakkie when he allegedly jumped off and broke his neck.

An eyewitness alleges he was pushed from the vehicle.

Some residents claimed he was killed because he was black, which apparently sparked violent protests in the area last week.

Bail

Defence attorney PJ Smith told the court that they believed the allegations made by the State's witness on eNCA did not corroborate the one he made to Brigadier Clifford Matome Kgorane.

He maintained that there were no other witnesses when Moshoeu jumped off the bakkie.

The men said they would be able to pay R20 000 bail. Members of the community had set up a petition opposing bail.

According to the petition, the community wants the men to remain behind bars until they stand trial.

Other members of the community set up another petition in favour of the men.

Mahumapelo said: "White people come together and sign a petition. They sign it as white Afrikaners.

"They don't say: 'Hey province, we have some challenges here, can we come together as white, Indians and coloureds to confront the problem of racism.' So exclusively as white people, they sign a petition to the court - that is racism."

He said the court should look at how Moshoeu died.

He also warned that if justice was not done - the community would not be happy.

"People are not going to be happy if draconian legal judicial steps are not going to be taken against the accused. People are not going to be happy. Yes, the judiciary is independent."

He said the unhappiness among the community would manifest in different forms.

Read more on:    mahikeng  |  crime

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