Undertakers help bury five pupils

Sibongile Mashaba

Sibongile Mashaba

Soweto funeral undertakers have come together to bury five of the six pupils who died when a taxi ferrying them from a choral music competition overturned last week.

The pupils were returning from the music competition in Tembisa, Ekurhuleni, when the accident happened.

The driver of the minibus taxi in which the pupils were travelling was also killed. Six other pupils were injured but they have subsequently been discharged from hospital.

The deceased are Zitholele Mbuyisa, 21, his younger brother Thamsanqa, 19, Lebogang Mathebula, 15, Lerato Matopa, 16, Papi Lapisa, 20 and Dimpho Madife, 23.

All, except Madife, will be buried on Sunday. The service for their funeral begins at 8am at the Multipurpose Hall in Protea South, Soweto. They will be buried at noon at Avalon Cemetery.

Madife will be buried separately tomorrow. The driver of the taxi was buried in KwaZulu-Natal last weekend.

After the rites at the cemetery, mourners can choose to go to any of the bereaved families where food will be prepared.

Under the auspices of the Soweto Funeral Undertakers Association, the 50-member group yesterday said it was ploughing back into the communities it served.

Eddie Mutungutungu said: "We have to help those in need. When I was informed about the deaths of the pupils, I was touched. I went to visit the families and could see that they were struggling."

Mutungutungu said two of the children who died in the accident were from the same family in Tshiawelo, Soweto.

Another two were from the same street, also in Tshiawelo.

"These children had gone to a choral music competition in Tembisa. It was not one of those 'let us get drunk trips'.

"It just shows that there are still youths who value life and are doing something positive about their lives. We feel for their families," he said.