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Mom forgives ex for killing six-month-old daughter

Lesiba Motsai, 27, appearing in the Mookgophong Magistrate's Court for murdering his baby.
Lesiba Motsai, 27, appearing in the Mookgophong Magistrate's Court for murdering his baby.

A 20-year-old mother of a six-month-old baby who was stabbed several times and bludgeoned to death with a pickaxe by her ex-boyfriend has forgiven him.

Modjadji Marikhela, of Mookgopong in Limpopo, told Sowetan yesterday she forgave her daughter's father who was this week convicted by the Polokwane High Court and sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of their daughter Bonolo in May last year.

Lesiba Albert Motsai, 27, attacked his daughter after suspecting Marikhela of cheating on him.

Marikhela, however, insisted that she had already broken up with Motsai when he attacked their child.

Marikhela spoke hesitantly about forgiving Motsai.

"I approached him on Monday after the sentence was handed down and I told him that I forgive him and he said he also wanted to apologise," Marikhela said.

She said even though she knew and accepted that her daughter would never return to life, she didn't want to hold grudges against Motsai.

"It would not help to hold a grudge against him," she said.

Modjadji Marikhela
Modjadji Marikhela
Image: Antonio Muchave

Marikhela said she would one day go visit Motsai in prison where he will be serving his time.

"I can go visit him. If his family invite me, I will go and see him, and it has nothing to do with our relationship. I don't want him back."

Marikhela was close to tears when she explained how the brutal murder has affected her surviving four-year-old daughter.

"She keeps on asking when will Bonolo come back. Even after I took her to Bonolo's grave she is still not convinced.

"She insisted that she wanted to open the grave to see indeed if it was her sister [in the grave]," she said.

Marikhela said she and her daughter have not received any form of counselling since Bonolo's brutal murder.

However, Bonolo's grandmother Margaret Sefularo said she would never forgive Motsai.

"He killed an innocent soul, he stabbed and hit her with the pickaxe which ripped apart her entire stomach.

"I can't forget that horrible picture in mind," Sefularo said.

She said the picture still haunted her even to this day.

"It's haunting me day and night. Lesiba should have also killed himself because at the moment he will be eating free food and (will be) breathing in prison," she said.

Sefularo said Bonolo perhaps was going to grow, study and become something in life.

Motsai was also sentenced for a further two years for assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

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