'This breaks my heart' - Palesa Matlamela's family eager for justice after she was killed

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Palesa Matlamela's family waited for her to come home, only to get the news that she had died.
Palesa Matlamela's family waited for her to come home, only to get the news that she had died.
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They waited for her to come home. 

When she left the house, dressed in a theme to accommodate the denim and white event she was going to with her boyfriend, she promised she'd be right back. 

So her mom waited up. And she never walked through the door. 

The next day, they found out Palesa Matlamela (28) from Alexandra, North of Joburg was dead. She was gone. 

When we catch up with Palesa's family, they've already put her to rest. But now, their wounds have been reopened after a voicenote from the alleged killer started doing the rounds. 

In the voicenote, the alleged killer confesses and says he killed her by mistake. 

Her aunt Mmaphuti Maboya says Palesa was allegedly in an abusive relationship for over five years and has been making excuses for her boyfriend throughout their relationship.

She says they have laid their child to rest and now they can attend the case. They want justice even though it won’t bring her back, especially because of the voicenotes and the fact that the boyfriend handed himself over to the police on a Wednesday.

"It is hardly two weeks since we laid my niece to rest, yet telling this story breaks me down and brings me to tears, because we did see it coming and we couldn’t help her," she tells Drum.

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They found out Palesa had died after she was admitted to the hospital.

"My sister received a call on Monday, it was a female voice and the person introduce herself as a doctor from Edenvale hospital, and she was calling to inform her that her daughter passed away. As soon as she asked if she was Palesa's mother, she knew her child was dead. 

“My sister heard the boyfriend’s voice in the background, and she asked the doctor if the boyfriend killed her daughter, the doctor said she can’t answer that. My sister then asked if Palesa is dead.

"The doctor asked if she could come to the hospital. When my sister was about to get out of the house, there was a guy who is a friend and mechanic of the boyfriend and because Palesa was using the boyfriend’s car, the mechanic guy came to check the car.

"He is the guy who was contacted by the boyfriend on a Sunday night to inform him that Palesa is not waking up, he knew she was dead,” says the sobbing aunt.

Mmaphuti says she received a message from some lady on Facebook asking if she knew that the boyfriend had called the very same guy the night before to confirm if Palesa is dead.

"We found my sister’s daughter at the hospital covered in blood and that is the last image we have of her, a bubbly girl with an infectious smile and good aura who lost her life in a hands of a man because she couldn’t get out of an abusive relationship," she tells Drum.

After the incident, the police went looking for him in both his houses, but they couldn’t find him and he handed himself over on a Wednesday, says Mmaphuti.

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“However, there is a voicenote he [allegedly] sent to one of his friends where he admits that he [allegedly] killed her by mistake and that they were both drunk, and it was not his intention to kill her. He allegedly says he was only pushing her, but it turned out that he used too much power, then Palesa hit her head hard and died on the spot. He allegedly admitted to knowing that she was dead before he took her to the hospital, yet he told us a different story,” Mmaphuthi says.

She says he allegedly further blames it on black magic, but the abuse has been happening and Palesa covered all the scars she got with tattoos.

"We haven’t heard much yet from the police in terms of what his confession is, we just know that he handed himself over," says the aunt.

“We are waiting for his first court appearance to hear what conspired that night that led to my niece losing her life. I am not even sure that I am ready to see him, especially now that I heard him say it,” she says.

Police spokesperson Colonel Dimakatso Sello confirmed that a case of murder was opened, and the suspect had handed himself over to the police.

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