Coligny boy died of a broken neck, says father

Coligny boy died of a broken neck, says father

A teenager killed in Coligny in the North West province after allegedly being loaded into a bakkie by two farmers who accused him of stealing a sunflower from their field died of a broken neck, his father said on Monday.

SAPS vehicle
Khatija Nxedlana

“His neck is broken, the head moves loosely from one side to another. He had a cut on his throat, on the chin and at the back of his neck. There is also blood in his month,” said Sakkie Dingake, describing how he found his son, Matlhomola Jonas Mosweu, at the government mortuary in nearby Lichtenburg on Sunday.

Matlhomola allegedly died when he either jumped out of the bakkie or fell from it.

His death had sparked violent protests that left a trail of destruction in the small maize-producing town. The violence saw the torching of three houses and three trucks.

Dingake, 45, of Scotland informal settlement near Tlhabologang, said his son was last seen on April 18 when his grandmother sent him to town to buy paraffin for her.

“He returned and went out. That was the last time we saw him. All the time we thought he had visited friends at a farm in Putfontein. He usually spent time with his friends there during the school holiday. All this time we were fighting, only to found out that we were fighting for our child.”

Dingake said the family found out on Sunday that Matlhomola was dead.

Matlhomola’s mother Agnes Mosweu, 43, said she asked her son’s friends whether he was at the Putfontein farm but was told he was not there.

“I get worried. I was at church when I receive a telephone call to come to the police station,” she said.

Dingake said their suspicions were confirmed when a primary school principal came to him and showed him a photo inquiring whether it was not his son.

He confirmed it was his son and was taken to the government mortuary to identify him.

“I am heartbroken. Those who did this to my son must suffer the same fate. They killed my son, they must also be killed,” he said.

He refuted claims that Matlhomola had stolen a sunflower from the fields next to Scotland informal settlement.

“Matlhomola did not steal sunflowers, he in fact does not eat sunflower seeds why would he steal sunflower?” he asked.

He said funeral arrangements have been completed and his son would be laid to rest on Saturday in Coligny. Matlhomola was a grade six pupil at a farm school in Coligny and was the third born of seven children.

Two farmers, Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte, were arrested in connection with Matlhomola’s murder. They appeared in the Coligny Magistrate’s Court on Friday. The case against them was postponed to May 9 for a formal bail application.

Residents of the informal settlement said one was the accused allegedly previously killed two people, the recent being last year.

“Two people were found dead at his farm. They were coincidentally found by him. If there was no witness in the case of the Matlhomola Mosweu, he would have dumped him in the fields and after days went to the police to report that he found a person dead at his farm.”

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