Families remember victims of political unrest
THERE was a sombre mood as families remembered their loved ones killed during political unrest in the early 1990s at an emotional wreath laying ceremony in Umgababa, south of Durban yesterday.
The Siyabakhumbula Memorial Day was held to honour the lives of fallen heroes and heroines who were killed during political unrest between the IFP and ANC in Umgababa.
The commemoration also especially marked the 25th anniversary of the deaths of 29 people killed in the area on October 18, 1992. An emotional Nokuthula Mzobe, 59, who lost her six-year-old son, couldn’t hold back her tears when she spoke to The Mercury, detailing how she received a call while at work, informing her about the incident.
“My heart breaks each time I see the boys Siboniso used to play with, they’re grown, working some are married with kids, it hurts, it just hurts,” she said.
Ethekwini municipality’s head of Parks, Recreation and Culture Thembinkosi Ngcobo said the commemoration was held in remembrance of the 29 people who were killed in the area.
“This incident is really locked in our memories, the reason these people were killed is because they differed politically, supported different political ideologies, and it was thought that the easiest way to resolve these differences was to kill one another.
“We should not be killing one another where we can’t agree, there must be a peaceful co-existence among different political ideologies and cultures,” he said.
He said the memorial site was going to form part of a heritage liberation route, it will be one of the sites along with many other areas around Umgababa.
Secretary General of the uMkhonto we Sizwe (MK) veterans Alpha “James” Sifumbha said: “Today is important because we are honouring our fallen comrades who died during the struggle for freedom.”
eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede, along with Free State Premier Ace Magashule and ANC eThekwini regional secretary Bheki Ntuli laid the wreaths at the memorial.
Former Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) Commander, Nkanyamba Mkhize addresses the crowd at the Siyabakhumbula Memorial Day, in Umgababa in front of wreaths laid at the memorial in honour of those who were killed.