With Zekhethelo at death’s door, her father Nkunzi’s determination to reform is on thin ice.
The trouble with leaving behind a life of crime is that the door back into that life doesn’t shut for good the moment that you open a bible – it’s always just a little bit ajar. And Nkunzi’s (Masoja Msiza) prison reform is about to receive its greatest challenge yet on Wednesday 11 October when he gets a call from the hospital. With no money coming in to pay for better treatment following his daughter Zekhethelo’s (Nyalleng Thibedi) injury sustained in an attack targeting at Nkunzi on Tuesday 3 October, her doctors are weighing up sending her to a hospice. But when a desperate father reaches out to his socalled friends on Thursday 12 October, no one reaches back.
A BITTER PLACE
“When days are dark, friends are few. He isn’t making enough money. He’s heartbroken,” reveals Masoja. “But he doesn’t think of going back to crime. He doesn’t. He believes people will rescue him from his situation like he always does for them. So he feels betrayed, down and out and no one is there to rescue him. He feels that the world is a bitter place to be, with tears in his eyes.” Even though his pillar of strength – MaNgcobo (Dawn Thandeka King) – offers moral support, Nkunzi feels alone. “When MaNgcobo says to him, ‘We have the the shisanyama, we have the panelbeaters’, that doesn’t help,” reveals Masoja. It throws Nkunzi back on the only person he can trust: himself. “In terms of hating other people, he doesn’t have that venom. But he grew up the hard way, he’s from the school of hard knocks and he relies on himself. He doesn’t trust anybody at all.”
THE LAST STRAW?
Isolated, bitter, angry and desperate, Nkunzi still holds on. “When Nkunzi broke onto the scene, people thought that he was too much of a beast. Now Nkunzi is in a prison situation for an act he didn’t commit and the audience knows the truth. They know he is reading his bible,” says Masoja. But on Tuesday 24 October, MaNgcobo uncovers a shocking secret that could bring that beast roaring back, despite Nkunzi’s best intentions.
Nkunzi hates being helpless and he’s not going to sit by while his daughter’s health declines. Zekhethelo’s condition is dire.