Photographs by Gerald Ntsimane
Last year POUT MOVEMENT in partnership with Constitution Hill (South Africa) & Frame Fun created a campaign that stands against the abuse of women and femicide. We paid tribute to the young women who lost their lives. This year, we still find ourselves in the same situation where mothers, sisters, aunts, friends and cousins are being killed by those they love or men in our society.
The series of images were shot by Gerald Ntsimane at the Women’s Jail at Constitution Hill, a place which holds a lot of history and meaning for South Africa.
We publish these images again so you can remember the women who lost their lives. By the looks of things, we need to add to these images to include those who continue to lose their lives due to gender-based violence. May their souls continue to rest in peace, and we will always remember them.
Zestah from Soweto was murdered and burnt by her boyfriend Zwelabantu Ngubeni (an ex-SANDF soldier).
She was stabbed several times, and reports state that she had other injuries. After her death, the boyfriend remained in the flat with her body overnight and for the next day. He set her body alight in a veld using petrol and walked away while it was burning. He then reported her missing.
The boyfriend was found guilty of murder, defeating or obstructing the course of justice, violation of a corpse, and unlawful possession of ammunition.
POPI QWABE (24)
Popi was shot in the upper body in Soweto after being kidnapped and robbed. Her body was discovered near Naledi High School by a passerby. According to media reports, she was taken to Bheki Mlangeni Hospital in Jabulani but succumbed to her injuries upon arrival. Popi was killed on the same day as her close friend Bongeka Phungula. The two men who were arrested for their murders were set free (temporarily absolved for their charges) after numerous postponements due to lack of evidence.
BONGEKA PHUNGULA (28)
Bongeka was close friends with Popi, and her body was discovered in Tladi, a neighbouring township less than 3km away from where Popi’s body was found. Bongeka was also shot in the upper body and police suspect she was raped.
THEMBEKA DUMANI (23)
Thembeka was shot dead outside her door in Marikana informal settlement at about 3am after returning from a friend’s house. According to media reports, she was shot twice in the face, three times in the head and once in the back. No one knows what really happened.
Reeva was a South African model who was shot dead by her boyfriend Oscar Pistorius. Killed on Valentiane’s Day in 2013 after being shot four times through a closed bathroom door, her story received worldwide media attention.
Oscar, a former Olympic athlete was initially sentenced to six years in prison for her murder in 2016. An additional 13 years was added to his sentence when the government appealed the sentence, stating that it was too lenient.
MANANKI ANNAH BOYS (28)
Mananki, a mother of two young children, was stabbed by her boyfriend in Winnie’s Park, Boipatong. Her body was left in a shack for several days to decompose. The boyfriend helped Mananki’s family to search for her when she went missing. He then took the body in a wheelbarrow and set her body alight in a veld. According to media reports, Mananki’s body was found by a cattle herder in Boipatong.
STACHA ARENDSE (11)
Stacha was raped and strangled by her neighbour Randy Tango who lured her into his house under the pretence that her mother was calling her. According to media reports, he strangled her because he didn’t want to go to jail. He then wrapped Stacha’s body in a sheet, put it in a dumping bin, rolled it to the the soccer field in Tafelsig (Mitchell’s Plain) where he dumped her body.
Her killer was handed three life terms in 2017.
PRISKA THANDEKA SCHALK (29)
Priska was stabbed to death by her husband and father of her child while their five-year old daughter looked on. Media reports state that their daughter begged her father to stop killing her mommy. Her husband Sebeshi Zacharia Mojela was sentenced to 20 years in jail.
VALENCIA FARMER (14)
Valencia was gang raped and stabbed 53 times in a deserted house in Eerste River in 1991. According to media reports six men were initially arrested, one of them was her boyfriend who invited the other men to rape her at a deserted house after drinking at a shebeen. Valencia was found naked by residents in the abandoned house. She was able to tell police what happened before she passed away at Tygerberg Hospital.
Two of the men received life sentences after the case was revisited. Russel Van Wyk, one of the men who killed her, was granted parole in 2017. He was 16 when he killed her. Another one of the men, father of four Elmario Maasdorp, was sentenced to 23 years in jail.
SIHLE SIKOLI (19)
Sihle was stabbed to death with a mini spear in what is believed is a hate crime. According to media reports, she was a member of Luleki Sizwe, a project that supports lesbian, bisexual and transgender women (LBT).
Sihle was attacked by five men who are gang members along with her friend. Before the attack, the men told them that they act like boys. Sihle went on to respond that they were not boys but lesbians.
They waited two hours for an ambulance while her friend, who was also stabbed in the arm, held her. Sihle later died at Mitchell’s Plain Hospital.
KARABO MOKOENA (22)
Karabo was stabbed to death by her ex-boyfriend Sandile Mantsoe who tried to conceal the murder by burning her body. Having received extensive media coverage, reports state that he stuffed her body in a bin and put her body in his car. Her body was doused in acid and set alight in a field in Johannesburg. Karabo’s body was found after her family filed a missing person’s report. The lead investigator on her case states that 60% of her organs, including her heart, were missing.
Karabo’s killer was sentenced to an effective 32 years for her murder.