“Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Karabo, for the brutal murder. But that should serve as an example to all our girls. Do not subject yourself to abuse from some guy because he has some money. Whatever that he has got, you subject yourself the abuse, to a point where you can die at their hands,” Mbalula addressed journalists during a ministerial imbizo in Soshanguve, north of Pretoria.
“Love cannot be bought. God has given you the best talent, of beauty. If a man is abusing you, stay away. Stay away from them because you will get a better one in the future. To stay with people who abuse you, at the end of the day we end up with the brutality like that and it is very painful. To see the beauty of that woman that has passed away [Karabo], it only tarnishes the integrity of real men.”
Mbalula said South African communities must do more to protect the girl child.
“Protect our girls and protect all the women around us. Ensure that they live a free life and they don’t end up dying at the hands of people who don’t know anything about love. May her soul rest in peace,” said Mbalula.
Mokoena has been missing since April 28.
News of Mokoena’s brutal murder sparked an outcry amongst South Africans, particularly on social media, with the hashtag #MenAreTrash trending on Thursday as news of her death spread.
Earlier on Friday, the case against Mokoena’s supposed boyfriend, Sandile Mantswe, was postponed in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court.
The 27-year-old made his first appearance in court and is facing a murder charge after he reportedly confessed to killing Mokoena. According to reports, Mokoena was killed before her body was set alight and then buried in Bramley, north of Johannesburg.
Mokoena’s family and friends were present and emotional during Mantswe’s court appearance on Friday, while members of the Democratic Alliance and Economic Freedom Fighters were also present in support of the family.
Mantswe is facing a count of premeditated murder which is a schedule six offence and can result in life imprisonment if found guilty, as well as a charge of defeating the ends of justice.
Speaking to the media after Mantswe’s brief appearance, National Prosecution Authority (NPA) spokeswoman Phindi Mjonodwane said despite reports, Mantswe had not confessed to the murder.
“There was no record of the accused confessing to the murder, only pointing out the scene,” Mjonodwane said.
“The State will be opposing bail because South Africa has a problem with domestic violence and in order to decrease the scourge we need to be up in arms as the State.”
The court case was postponed to May 24, for Mantswe to apply for bail.