Gran prays for South Pole explorer's return

2012-01-24 12:49

Pietermaritzburg - The grandmother of 19-year-old Nzuzo Mnikathi, who became the youngest black person to reach the South Pole on Sunday, says she won't rest until he's back home safely.

Ivy Ndlovu, said she is praying for his safe return.

The Unlimited Child called me to tell me that he’s reached the top and was leading the way,” Ndlovu said.

Despite hearing the good news, the grandmother said she is still uneasy.

“I will only be happy when he comes back home,” she told The Witness.


Mnikathi has not had an easy life. He was orphaned at the age of 9 and left to be raised by his grandmother. But on Sunday he proved that nothing is impossible.

He and the team covered the 111km distance in six-and-a-half days.

He survived frostbite and temperatures of 32°C below zero.

His achievement has made headlines on news channels and radio stations across the nation.

“Today has been the best day of my life. Even though I really struggled and am really exhausted, I am so grateful to be here with the rest of the team. Without their support and motivation, I don’t think I would have managed to hold out till the end, but I am so glad that I did,” said Mnikathi in a statement.

Iain Buchan, founder of The Unlimited Child, said the team encountered an unexpected slow uphill climb on the 19.5km final stretch to the finish.

“Nzuzo is a living example that people have unlimited potential. Here is a young man who has had a tough life, but is changing his future and has taken up our challenge to be an ambassador for The Unlimited Child,” Buchan said.

He said he was glad that the frostbite on Mnikathi’s fingers and nose held up well and he was able to join the rest of the team to ski the final haul.

The team were to board the Russian Twin Otter Turboprop cargo plane for the six-hour return flight to Union Glacier base camp in Antarctica, before flying back to Chile.

They are expected back in South Africa on Thursday.

- Expedition website

  • Godfrey - 2012-01-24 13:00

    Ag shame. She really thinks that praying to an imaginary magic man in the sky will help one way or the other.

      DayanGovender - 2012-01-24 13:11

      You are a jack ass!!!!!!

      Godfrey - 2012-01-24 13:27

      @DayanGovender Say what?

      Robert - 2012-01-24 13:50

      Well FeeOfGod, you pray to your religion called atheism, so leave other's to worship theirs. What's it to you anyway? CHOP!

      Godfrey - 2012-01-24 14:10

      Hello Robert I think her praying is rather cute - futile but cute. Atheism is not a religion. Atheism simply asserts that there is no god; it has no philosophy or doctrine. But don't worry. Atheism is an intelligence test which you may be able to do eventually. Of course if you have some evidence of the existence of a god that I am unaware of then I will of course be prepared to review my position.

      DayanGovender - 2012-01-24 14:12

      You are very patronising and annoying!

      Godfrey - 2012-01-24 14:20

      @DayanGovender I am pleased that you feel that way. Keep the prayer out of News24 (and this article is headlined about prayer) and I will not comment. Of course, if you can prove to me that prayer actually achieves anything then I will shout out to the world, "hallelujah! god exists".

      Bibi - 2012-01-24 16:59

      Godfrey, does your comment serve any purpose. Some of us believe in God or a God, some has animal symbols, the devil or whatever. If it works for her so be it. Don't be such a bitch.

      Bibi - 2012-01-24 17:02

      Gosh, I have to comment again. You are such a douche bag. It is the granny praying NOT Media24. They were merely reporting on a fanatastic acchievement and his gran's (which was his father and mother)reaction to this (dangerous) adventure.

      Godfrey - 2012-01-24 19:27

      @bibi Of course if you have some evidence of the existence of a god that I am unaware of then I will of course be prepared to review my position.

      Bibi - 2012-01-24 20:21

      You are not reading what I am trying to say - praying was the granny's reaction to her grandson's completion of a fantastic achievement. And on the achievement you should comment on. I did not say that I believe in God or a God, satan, a snake of a symbol of religious figure, I merely said that for some people these are the things that give them direction and purpose. This granny raised a wonderful son and if she wants to thank who she thinks deserves her prayers so be it.

  • Alon - 2012-01-24 15:22

    What a champ! Way to represent!

      Newsreader - 2012-01-24 17:30

      Yes I agree.... but then its amazing what they can do when you tell them there is a KFC at the South Pole!!!

  • Newsreader - 2012-01-24 17:23

    Nzuzo Mnikathi, 19, from Pietermaritzburg, smiles after becoming the youngest black person to reach the South Pole. He was part of the Unlimited Child South Pole expedition.... He is 19? Unlimited Child South Pole expedition? WTF.... is it because he is going to grade 8 this year? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha .....

      Bibi - 2012-01-24 20:26

      You are such an @#sehole. Would you be able to do that. No you sit on your couch with your 2 tone khaki shirt, false teeth and fat stomach and give all whites a bad name. I personally put you in the same class as Malema. With people like you, SA will never work. I want to vomit.

      Newsreader - 2012-01-25 08:04

      Bibi!! You should stay in cover. Now standing in your foxhole with your pink Gucci shirt shouting I am gay! Now Bibi bumbandit you are marked! I can bet you the country I am faster than anyone you know and I have great teeth. Ha ha ha ha ........ SA is F*cked and always will be under your party! The ANC!

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