Suicide, murder shocks family

Gershwin Chuenyane

Gershwin Chuenyane

An Atteridgeville, Pretoria, family is reeling after the suicide of a couple who got married seven months ago.

Mandla "Super" Nyembe, 45, a former Umkhonto we Sizwe cadre, shot and killed his wife, Lebogang Modiri, 40, a director in the Public Service Commission on December 26.

The incident, which was witnessed by a security guard took place at the PSC parking lot in Pretoria at about midnight. The security guard, who did not confront Nyembe, called the police, who followed him (Nyembe) to his home at Eldoglenn in Centurion.

When the police arrived they found Nyembe's body sprawled on the floor in his bedroom. He had shot himself in the head. His two step-children, aged 15 and eight, were sleeping in another room at the time.

Modiri was originally from Atteridgeville where her parents stay.

Her elder sister, Roseline who described her as "our everything", told Sowetan Nyembe had called her at about 11.40pm that night to warn her, but did not elaborate.

"He just said sister Roseline I have sad news for you.

"When I asked what it was all about, he hung up."

"I then called Lebogang, but she did not answer the phone.

"At about midnight Nyembe called again and said 'I have bad news, but you will find out tomorrow'."

Still reeling from shock, Roseline said she did not know what was the motive for the suicide because they had not noticed any feuding between the couple.

"They seemed a very happy couple. If there was any fighting then it was behind closed doors," she said.

The couple were married on May 14 last year.

Roseline lamented: "He killed my sister in the street and he killed himself in the privacy of their bedroom."