week ago, Eva Kumalo saw her daughter’s alleged killer at Mzoli’s, a popular Cape Town eatery in Gugulethu. She was too scared to approach him.
“I saw him, but I could not go and speak to him. I wish I could ask him why. Why did my child have to die in such an ugly, violent manner? I don’t understand. What did she do? She did not deserve to die like that.”
The young woman’s life was cut short at the tender age of 23 on April 14 2013, when she was kicked to death in a dark street in Woodstock – allegedly by internationally celebrated artist Zwelethu Mthethwa.
According to a police charge sheet, CCTV footage shows Mthethwa pulling up next to Nokuphila Kumalo in a Porsche at 2.40am. He allegedly started beating her and when she fell to the ground, he stomped on her.
Mthethwa’s murder trial started at the Western Cape High Court last Monday and continues tomorrow.
A pathologist testified that Nokuphila died of internal wounds, particularly a torn liver.
Eva, who is originally from Kimberley in the Northern Cape, gave birth to Nokuphila on February 11 1990 – the day Nelson Mandela was released from prison.
“I was about to give birth in the back of an ambulance when I heard on the radio about Mandela being released from prison,” says Eva.
So, the new mother named her baby Nokuphila.
Soon after Nokuphila’s birth, Eva moved to Cape Town. Nokuphila joined her mother there when she was seven years old.
Eva worked as a griller at Saddles in Table View to pay Nokuphila’s school fees at Intshinga Primary School in Gugulethu, where the youngster played netball and sang in a choir.
Nokuphila’s pet name was Ntombie. She loved cheesecake and dreamt of becoming a doctor. But Nokuphila never finished school. Cape Town sex workers have confirmed that she lived in the central-city suburb of
Zwelethu Mthethwa is accused of killing 23-year-old Nokuphila Kumalo