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Tragic Matricide-Suicide Shakes Lusikisiki, Eastern Cape

Published September 21, 2023
9 months ago

Residents of Lusikisiki, a small town in the Eastern Cape region of South Africa, struggle to come to terms with a chilling event, as a mother allegedly killed her three children before ending her own life. This heart-wrenching incident occurred just a day after World Suicide Prevention Day was commemorated.

Police spokesperson, Colonel Priscilla Naidu, detailed the horrifying account. 41-year-old Veziwe Ntsizela, accompanied by her children, stayed at their grandmother’s residence on Monday. In the early morning hours, Ntsizela woke her children and guided them to another room purportedly for prayer. However, the mother led her daughters, aged four to 14, to a nearby forest where they were coerced into ingesting pills.

According to Colonel Naidu, the eldest daughter rejected the concoction, managed to escape and alerted others in the homestead, leading to the call for authorities. On their arrival, the police made the grim discovery of three young bodies; Iyapha (4), Phile (8), and Inga Ntsizela (12). Veziwe Ntsizela's body was found on Tuesday morning, approximately 100 meters from the scene in thick bushland.

The police are now investigating three murders and have opened an inquest.

This harrowing incident is not the first of its kind recently, as it echoes a similar tragedy in Butterworth's Tholeni Administrative area last month. A poverty-stricken mother was suspected of poisoning her two daughters before committing suicide.

Lieutenant General Nomthetheleli Mene, the Provincial Commissioner, voiced her despair and worry over these events, highlighting women's vulnerability to mental health issues due to socioeconomic challenges. She stressed the importance of mental health support alongside efforts to alleviate poverty.

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