MUT students pay tribute to slain Zolile Khumalo at emotional memorial

Mangosuthu University of Technology students at the Durban Magistrate Court, ahead of the appearance of the man suspected of killing Zolile Khumalo.
Zolile Khumalo Mangosuthu University of Technology students at the Durban Magistrate Court, ahead of the appearance of the man suspected of killing Zolile Khumalo.
Image: THULI DLAMINI

About 1 000 Mangosuthu University of Technology students and staff lit candles and sang hymns as they recalled fallen student Zolile Khumalo.

Khumalo was shot dead‚ allegedly by her ex-lover Thabani Mzolo‚ at her MUT student residence at the Lonsdale Hotel in Durban on May 1.

The parents of the quantity surveying student from Eshowe‚ northern KwaZulu-Natal‚ sat solemnly through the proceedings as the students - clad in white T-shirts bearing her face - sang and paid tribute to her.

Her father‚ Solomuzi Khumalo‚ said he was heart sore that his daughter had died so tragically.

Khumalo‚ 21 will be buried in Eshowe on Saturday.

Sandile Dlamini‚ the institution’s Students Representative Council president‚ said the students and staff were united in their grief.

"It is a comforting moment when you see everyone coming together in support of the family of Zolilie after the tragedy and we believe that at last justice will be served‚" he said.

MUT vice-chancellor Duma Malaza told the gathering that the institution had committed to supporting the family financially during the funeral and to transport students to tragic occasion.

Earlier in the day‚ hundreds of students gathered outside the Durban Magistrate's court where Mzolo appeared in court.

Magistrate Mahomed Motala heard that the 23-year-old had been previously convicted on assault and that the residential addresses provided were still in the process of being verified.

No further information was given about his assault conviction.

The matter was adjourned for a formal bail application on May 17.

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