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... she will be running the Soweto Marathon on Sunday to win - but will have to look over her shoulder in fear of a jilted lover's bullet

By unknown | Oct 31, 2006 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Prominent South African runner Poppy Mlambo is in hiding because her ex-boyfriend has threatened to kill her because she dumped him.

He has allegedly threatened to shoot her on Sunday during the Nedbank Soweto Marathon and then commit suicide.

Mlambo has obtained two restraining orders against him, but police have advised her to report the threats "so that action can be taken against him".

In an exclusive interview with Sowetan from her hiding place, Mlambo has accused the boyfriend of abusing her for years.

The boyfriend, a casual athlete, is known to Sowetan.

"I have been involved with this man since 2000.

"Everything was going well up until 2002, when he started drinking," said a tearful Mlambo.

"The situation became worse later that year. He started abusing me physically. He would beat me up for no apparent reason. His family urged me to go to the police station.

"At first I thought he would change, but I was only fooling myself.

"The situation got out of hand in 2004 when he started beating me as if I was a punching bag. After his mother spoke to me I went to the Protea police station.

"I applied for a protection order because I could not take it. I was the laughing stock of the Emndeni community [Soweto]. He continued despite the protection order."

Mlambo, who is one of the most committed black women athletes, said her problems were affecting her performance.

"He threatened me with a knife. I dumped him in August after the cross-country championships in Witbank. This was after he tried to attack me with a beer bottle."

She said she has applied for another protection order.

Mlambo said her former boyfriend has threatened to shoot her during the Nedbank Soweto Marathon on Sunday. She said he told her he would then turn the gun on himself.

Police superintendent Thembi Nkhwashu has urged people to report protection order violations to the police.

"They must phone 10111 or go to the nearest police station.

"The order serves as a warrant of arrest," said Nkhwashu.


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