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Grandson turned violent after argument - cousin

By unknown | Jan 26, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

"I am prepared to die," Samkelo Mlobela wrote in his suicide note minutes before he allegedly killed his grandmother on Wednesday morning.

Albertina Shabalala, 73, of Mahwaqa in Hibberdene on the KwaZulu-Natal south coast, was bludgeoned with a sewing machine in her home before being stabbed several times.

Mlobela, 20, was arrested shortly afterwards. He confessed to police that he had left his granny's heart on the ground.

Family members say she was killed because she refused to pray when asked to do so by the suspect.

Yesterday Sowetan visited the family and found neighbours coming to pay their last respects to Shabalala, who they all described as "lively and nice".

Another grandson, Cebo Shabalala, 21, said he arrived home with his cousin on Tuesday afternoon.

"He said he wanted to visit granny and we both went home."

Before they went to bed, Mlobela had allegedly pleaded with them to fast and pray.

"I told him I couldn't fast because I like food. I saw him writing a note but didn't pay much attention to it," said Shabalala.

When he woke up again at about 4am Mlobela was watching television.

"I went back to sleep and when I woke up I heard him and granny talking in the kitchen."

Moments later, he heard Shabalala threatening his grandmother.

"He slapped her and I rushed outside to get help because I knew that once he became violent, he would be uncontrollable. When I returned with a neighbour he had locked all the doors."

Mlobela allegedly opened the door and walked away as if nothing had happened, but he was armed with a knife and a pair of scissors.

Everything inside the house lay in ruins and their grandmother lay dead on the floor.

Mlobela allegedly stabbed another woman, but she survived.

Neighbours recalled how Mlobela was abusive towards his mother. Whenever he needed something, he would assault her if she did not give it to him, they said. Last year he was arrested for assaulting her.

Police said that when they tried to arrest him on Wednesday he tried to disarm one of the officers. A policeman shot him in the leg to get him under control.

When police took a statement from him, he confessed he'd killed his grandmother because "she refused to pray".

"He said he smashed her and took out her heart and left it on the ground," said a police officer.

He is expected to appear in the Umzumbe magistrates' court today on charges of murder, attempted murder and resisting arrest .


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