Woman kills daughter over ‘boyfriends’
By Makhosi Sibanda
BULAWAYO – A disciplinary measure by a woman from Bulawayo’s Pumula South suburb ended in tragedy when she allegedly killed her 15-year-old daughter for going out with “boyfriends”.
Bulawayo provincial spokesperson Inspector Mandlenkosi Moyo confirmed the incident, which occurred on Saturday, saying the girl could have died from injuries she sustained after a beating by her mother.
“We are handling a case where a Pumula South girl died after sustaining injuries after being beaten up by her mother. We cannot ascertain the exact time she died but we suspect that it could have been moments after the assault,” said Insp Moyo.
The body of the girl was discovered more than 24 hours later after the woman turned herself to the police. Neighbours of the woman identified her as Mrs Cecilia Gurwe.
According to the neighbours, trouble started at about 4pm on Saturday when Mrs Gurwe spotted her daughter with “friends” at the family’s gate.
“It seems the mother did not understand the nature of friends that were in the company of Natasha and summoned her into their house. Moments later we heard her screams coming from the house, as her mother was beating her up,” said a neighbour who declined to be identified.
He said the girl, who was a Form Three pupil at Pumula High School, was screaming and neighbours in surrounding houses got worried.
“We suspect that she was beating up Natasha with a sjambok. Since this was happening in someone else’s house it was difficult for the neighbours to intervene and save the girl from the beating,” said the neighbour.
He said due to their concerns from the screams they had heard coming from the house the previous day, they were worried about the wellbeing of the girl.
“On Sunday we had to keep an eye on the happenings in that yard hoping to see Natasha, but sadly we did not see her the whole day,” said the neighbour.
He said the neighbours became more worried after they saw her mother in the company of three unfamiliar women whispering on the other side of the yard.
“Moments later they went out and in the act of suspicion that the ladies were up to no good, some neighbours advised tenants that lived in the same yard to lock the gate. When they came back in the middle of the night, they found the gate locked. She then immediately turned herself to the police,” said the neighbour.
Another neighbour said they were surprised to see Mrs Gurwe coming back in the company of police officers at about 1am.
“She came back in the company of police officers and led them into the house where they took Natasha’s body out,” said a neighbour who only identified herself as Mrs Moyo.
She said she was surprised by the fact that Mrs Gurwe went all the way to report the death without making an effort to at least alert her neighbours.
“Her actions are weird, there is something that she is hiding from us, and if it was a genuine accident that Natasha died while she was disciplining her, she should have then alerted us. Most people in the suburb are reading a lot into her actions,” said Mrs Moyo.