Mom: I found my children hanged

2019-09-05 15:48
The children (from left) Sipho Mpungose (10), Khwezi Mpungose (six), Ayakha Jiyama (16) and Luhle Mpungose (four) who were murdered on Tuesday.

The children (from left) Sipho Mpungose (10), Khwezi Mpungose (six), Ayakha Jiyama (16) and Luhle Mpungose (four) who were murdered on Tuesday.

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A Pietermaritzburg woman is reeling from the horror of discovering her four children dead on Tuesday. 

The close relative suspected of killing Luhle Mpungose (four), Khwezi Mpungose (six), Sipho Mpungose (10) and Ayakha Jiyama (16) has been arrested and will appear in court soon.

The three younger children were found by their mother, Xoli Dladla-Mpungose (39), hanging in their bedrooms at their home in Wyebank, Durban, on Tuesday afternoon.

The man (41) was arrested in Kwa­Dabeka, Pinetown, yesterday after a manhunt.

Dladla-Mpungose told News24 that after the man started acting suspiciously on Tuesday, she and a friend went to get the younger children from school and their crèche, but they had already been taken out.

She said she received e-mail receipts for Taxify trips made to collect the children. Meanwhile, another friend was sent to Pinetown Girls’ High to collect the the teenager, but she was also no longer at school.

She then went to the Pinetown police station, which sent a van with her to her home. There, the locks had been changed and they broke the door down.

“We found my children hanging from the ceiling.”

Dladla-Mpungose said the childen had been hanged with their own clothing in their bedrooms and in her room.

She said neighbours told her the 10-year-old had been sent to a nearby shop repeatedly during the time the man was at the house.

“Why would he be sending the child back and forth to the shops, so that he could remain alone with the younger ones?” she said.

The teenager was killed in a bushy area in New Germany, she said.

She said 16-year-old Ayakha, upon seeing the man at her school, gave a friend her mother’s cellphone number.

Taxify receipts told Dladla-Mpungose the man had left Pinetown.

She posted an appeal about her daughter on social media and one of Ayakha’s friends let her know she had seen the girl and the man “walking on a bridge”. The girl was found dead, strangled with the belt of a dressing gown, in the bush. Dladla-Mpungose said the man must have brought the belt with him. She speculated that the man couldn’t hang her because she was too big for him to handle.

Speaking at Dladla-Mpungose’s family home in Copesville, Pietermaritzburg, the children’s aunt Sli Mlawuza, told The Witness that the man allegedly called another relative in Johannesburg and told her where they would find Ayakha’s body.

KwaZulu-Natal Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza on Wednesday visited Dladla-Mpungose and her family at her home in Copesville.

She told The Witness that they had been intending to put the mother in a place of safety until they heard the news of the man’s arrest.

“We are all still very horrified by the brutal murder of these innocent children and applaud the police for arresting this heartless man.

“We also have faith that the man will get a lengthy sentence and no parole.”

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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