Girl (9) drowns in rainfall

2019-02-20 06:01
Sindiswa Mrwebi shows a photo on her phone of her deceased daughter, Chidimma (right) and Tuli Mrwebi (her sister’s child). Photo: Charles Smith

Sindiswa Mrwebi shows a photo on her phone of her deceased daughter, Chidimma (right) and Tuli Mrwebi (her sister’s child). Photo: Charles Smith

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A grief-stricken woman mourns the tragic death of her daughter who died in floodwaters in Bloemfontein.

“When her friends came to fetch her, I never thought it was the last time I will see my daughter alive,” said Sindiswa Mrwebi (29) from Bloemfontein, reacting to the death of her only daughter, Chidimma (9).

The girl died on Friday (15/02) after floodwaters swept her away.

Tuli Mrwebi (10), the daughter of Sindiswa’s sister who miraculously escaped death, was admitted to the Pelonomi Hospital. She is in a stable condition.

This is the second tragic incident that strikes the family in two years.

Chidimma’s father, Fabian Oguadimma, died of meningitis in 2017.

“It feels like a nightmare,” said Sindiswa in her brickhouse where she lives in Batho location.

Chidimma was chatting with her grandmother Oshinia on Friday afternoon after school when her two cousins Tuli and Sbahle Mrwebi (12), and three friends came to fetch her to go play.

“About 15 minutes later, Sbahle stormed into the house and said Tuli and Chidimma were in the water,” said Sindiswa.

By the time the family arrived at the spruit in Batho, only Tuli was in the ambulance.

Sindiswa hopelessly watched rescue divers searching for her daughter in the flooded spruit where the water was flowing strong due to the rainfall.

After what felt like an eternity for Sindiswa, she went to Phola Park where the police divers managed to trace Chidimma.

“I was there when my daughter’s body was retrieved from the water by the divers. I had to watch how they put her frail body in a white bag,” said Sindiswa.

Sindiswa said her son, Ony (6), asked her repeatedly when his sister is coming back. He does not understand his sister would never return home.

She described Chidimma as a happy child who always had a smile on her face.

“She always said when she grows up she will be a doctor. But now I will never see my child grow up.”

Funeral arrangements will be announced later.

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