Tho­bile takes the law into her own hands when her un­cle Mb­hekiseni picks a new vic­tim.

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Uzalo Mon-Wed SABC1 (*191) 20:30

Salon stylist Tho­bile (Nokuthula Mabika) was hor­ri­fied when she saw a face from her past on Fri­day 12 May. Not only is MaMlambo’s (Gugu Gumede) new boyfriend Mb­hekiseni (Simo Mag­waza) re­lated to her – he’s the un­cle who raped her re­peat­edly from when she was just 12 years old. On Thurs­day 18 May, she laid charges against him but “hon­ourable” Mb­hekiseni had mem­bers of the church in love with his per­son­al­ity and charm and Tho­bile was branded a liar. But there are two peo­ple who know her and be­lieve her and with GC (Khaya Dladla) and Sman­gele’s (Sihle Nd­aba) love and support, Tho­bile is fight­ing for truth and jus­tice.


GC and Sman­gele’s support in the face of ev­ery­one else’s de­nial lit­er­ally saves Tho­bile’s life. “It means so much to her and that’s what makes her sur­vive the whole sit­u­a­tion. There’s a time when she wants to kill her­self (on Tues­day 23 May) but she thinks, ‘I have done so much for my­self. I have built a whole life for my­self. I have friends, re­gard­less of the past I have. It’s not per­fect, but the life that I have made for my­self in KwaMashu is beau­ti­ful be­cause of these two’.”


Ev­ery­one else seems ea­ger for Tho­bile to drop the sub­ject – and not for the first time. “Af­ter her mother died, her un­cle started rap­ing her. Her grand­mother tried to hide it from the out­side world. She tried to make Tho­bile be­lieve that she was just imag­in­ing things. At that time, I don’t think that Tho­bile was even an­gry at her. She was prob­a­bly like, ‘My grand­mother doesn’t un­der­stand what is hap­pen­ing to me,’” ex­plains Nokuthula. It was only in her late teens af­ter her grand­mother died and her un­cle’s abuse es­ca­lated that Tho­bile ran away to KwaMashu.


And Nokuthula re­veals that Tho­bile’s com­mu­nity ac­tu­ally does be­lieve her. “She can see it in their eyes. It’s just that they don’t re­ally want to con­front the sit­u­a­tion,” she ex­plains. They are also pick­ing up on a seam of doubt in Tho­bile her­self. “Her un­cle tells ev­ery­one that the time that she claims he was mo­lest­ing her was around the same time that her cousins had just died too. And since Tho­bile had for­got­ten that, she gets a lit­tle con­fused.” But the abuse isn’t a fan­tasy brought about by dark times – it was the trauma of abuse that had blocked out every­thing else in Tho­bile’s world.


De­spite the con­fu­sion, “Deep down there is that feel­ing,” says Nokuthula. “She goes to visit her un­cle, but when she gets there the un­cle has a young girl on his lap and he’s do­ing the ex­act same thing to her as he did to Tho­bile,” says Nokuthula. “It trig­gers a rage in her!” Tho­bile con­fronts her un­cle at the shisanyama on Thurs­day 1 June and puts a bul­let in him. And while she’s led away in hand­cuffs and tears on Fri­day 2 June, Tho­bile is soon go­ing to have a lot more sym­pa­this­ers…

Tho­bile isn’t let­ting her un­cle get away with his sex crimes any longer.

Tho­bile leaves a scar of her own on Mb­hekiseni.

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