lucky to be alive

Zinhle Mapumulo

Zinhle Mapumulo

Siyabonga Dube has to be the luckiest child alive.

The two-year-old boy escaped death with just a few scratches and a fractured leg when his mother leapt from the ninth floor of a building with him and his three-week-old sister under her arms.

Siyabonga survived the fall that killed both his mother Sindi and sister Nokubonga.

The little boy spent Christmas recovering at the Johannesburg Hospital, and only returned home a week ago.

Sowetan visited Siyabonga at his new home in Kempton Park, Ekurhuleni, yesterday where he now lives with his mother's sister, Irene Dube.

He previously lived with his family in Hillbrow.

Sowetan found Siyabonga playing happily with his toys in the yard oblivious to the attention on him.

Were it not for the little scar on his upper lip, one would not believe that he survived a nine-storey fall.

He had sustained a cut and minor scratches when he landed on a barbed wire fence on his downwards fall before being rescued by a homeless man.

To date, the toddler's family does not know the real reason that drove his mother to take her life and that of her other child.

The only clue was a message scribbled on the wall of her apartment with a marking pen.

The message said that she had had enough of the abuse she suffered from her children's father, Mxolisi Moyo.

"We have decided to let it go. It is of no use trying to find the reason that pushed my sister to suicide because it will not bring her back," said Irene.

"Moyo comes here regularly to see his child, and as family we have no problem with that because Siyabonga is his child," she said.

Moyo, Sindi and their two children had lived at Balnagask, a residential flat in Hillbrow, for three months before the tragedy.

They are Zimbabwean nationals who had been living in South Africa for more than three years.