Holidays a grim time for Palesa’s family
THE holidays proved difficult for the Madiba family who remain in the dark over their daughter Palesa’s death.
She disappeared in 2013 and her remains were found during the December 2015 holidays.
The University of Johannesburg (UJ) student’s cousin Thabiso Tsoledi yesterday told The Star that despite the family coming to terms with the 20-yearold’s death, the last few weeks, a period during which families were meant to be together, have been grim. “The festive season was difficult for us as a family because we are still healing and recovering,” Tsoledi said.
“There obviously was a sombre mood, but that’s what happens.”
Tsoledi said despite their sadness, they were still hoping the police would bring those responsible for Madiba’s death to justice.
“Police have remained in touch with us as investigations are currently ongoing. We have to allow the legal process to unfold,” Tsoledi said.
“It is tough to expect anything from the police at this moment or for the next few months because nothing concrete has come up over the past year, so we have to be patient and wait for the police to conclude their investigations.”
Police have yet to make an arrest over Madiba’s disappearance and death.
Police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Lungelo Dlamini yesterday said the investigations were at an advanced stage and refused to comment further.
Madiba, a UJ student, was reported missing on August 13, 2013.
Her family had last seen her on August 9 that year, when she left to visit a friend in Phiri, although she had told her family she was going to visit her mother in Protea Glen, also in Soweto.
According to the friend, Tshidi Mkhwanazi, Madiba spent time with her at the house in Phiri until Mkhwanazi left for work.
Allegedly, the last person to see Madiba alive was Mkhwanazi’s uncle, who lived in a back room on the property.
Madiba had apparently given him the keys to the house as she headed to a10am lecture at UJ’s Soweto campus.
After Madiba was reported missing, the uncle issued Madiba’s family with a restraining order after claiming they were harassing him.
The uncle later moved out of the house.
Police were given false tipoffs in the investigation that led to a woman who claimed to know where Madiba was. She was charged with defeating the ends of justice.
However, Madiba’s remains were found in 2015 before being positively identified by her family.
BATTLE: Palesa Madiba’s family are still seeking closure.