Student dies, man arrested

A 21-year-old first-year student of the Sol Plaatje University, Mpho Jackson, died after reportedly suffering serious burn wounds in her shack during the early hours of Saturday (25/08).

A man was arrested shortly after the incident and faces a charge of murder.

Jackson died a few hours after being admitted to the Kimberley Hospital Complex (KHC) on Saturday.

Her four-year-old nephew is still fighting for his life in the intensive care unit at the KHC, while her own son was discharged with minor burn injuries on the forehead, fingers and feet.

Jackson was last seen on Friday (24/08) at around 20:00 when she announced that she wants to prepare for her assignment the next day.

She left with the two toddlers.

Jackson’s mother, Kedisaletse Thure, said she was woken by her daughter’s screams for help shortly after 01:00 as she was engulfed by furious flames in her part of the shack.

Thure said neighbours and patrol members of Operation Wanya Tsotsi assisted in extinguishing the fire while waiting for the police and the fire brigade.

Thure is left traumatised and calls for justice for her daughter’s death.

She said her daughter’s last words led them to the phone conversation she had with the suspect.

“Mpho was my everything, after I buried her older sister in 2011, also at the age of 21,” Thure said, sobbing.

“This is too much. I can’t handle this as Mpho too had died, in Women’s Month, nogal. I am so drained from asking myself unanswered questions.

“We will not even be able to see her in the coffin. Her plea for me to give her water while on the hospital bed will forever ring in my ears.”

Thure described her daughter as a hard worker, and a confident, focussed women who volunteered as a peer educator on a part-time basis.

“She has been staying with me even after her marriage and before her son was born.

“She learnt from my struggles and assured me that she is going to change my life by buying me a house and be there for me.”

Thure, who had been working at a home-based care non-governmental organisation her whole life, was the highlight of the family who all believed will make a positive change in the family, said Jackson.

Sgt Majang Skalkie, police spokesperson, said the suspect is expected to appear before the Galeshewe Magistrates’ Court on charges of murder.