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Troubled mom jailed for setting her boys alight

By PHILANI NOMBEMBE, Times Media Group | 2012-10-26 14:11:05.0

A mother who killed her 9-year-old son for smoking has been sentenced to 11 years imprisonment.

The 37-year-old from Delft in Cape Town caught her two sons with cigarettes in May last year.

She drenched them with paraffin. Enraged, she struck a match and the boys were set alight.

Her older son escaped but the other sustained 90% burns to his body and died at the Red Cross Hospital six weeks later.

Handing down sentence in the Cape Town High Court yesterday, Judge Vincent Saldanha said the woman’s nine-year-old's dream of becoming a doctor had been cut short.

Reports from various social workers and clinical psychologists showed that the mother suffered from depression and had attempted suicide twice.

Her mother abused and neglected her as a child. She was also kicked out her home when she fell pregnant at 16.

Nomavayi became 'over-protective' of her children.

“[The deceased] and his brother were much loved and spent most of their time playing soccer in the confines of the family home,” said Saldanha.

Her efforts to protect her children were seemingly dashed when she found them smoking.

She was convicted of murder and attempted murder.

Her surviving son in is foster care pending a Family Court inquiry.

Saldanha ordered that she undergo counselling in prison and that the Department of Social Services in the Western Cape should ensure that her surviving son receives counselling.