Why I killed my son, Taariq

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taariq's killer mom

Brendan Magaar

Taariqs mother Zulfa Jacobs

Child killer Zulfa Jacobs claims she suffocated her little son Taariq out of love “to protect him”.

The jailed Mitchells Plain woman has made the dramatic claim in a hand-written prison confession given to the Daily Voice.

In the emotional six-page letter, Jacobs claims she was driven to kill her son because she feared losing him.

“He (her husband) wanted to take my son away from me and I couldn’t let that happen,” she writes.

“If I couldn’t take care of him nobody else would.”

Jacobs begs for forgiveness for her terrible deed. “Please I ask, don’t judge (me) for what I have done - I only did it to protect my son,” she writes.”It was done out of love for him.”

Taariq’s killing shocked the nation when it hit the headlines shortly after Christmas. Jacobs at first told cops that her two-year-old son was missing.

But it soon emerged she had killed her own child. Jacobs later admitted she buried Taariq’s face in the sand until he suffocated to death. She then buried him in a shallow grave.

And now - for the first time - the killer mom discloses in her own words the fateful moments of “that awful day, December 29”.

She reveals: “We were walking past the sand and bushes and I sat down and Taariq was sitting next to me.

“I was crying thinking where my life is now and what I went through for seven years (in her marriage).

“By the time I realised what I was doing to my son it was too late.”I couldn’t believe it, that I just killed my son.

“I didn’t know what to do, I closed him with a jacket and (covered) his feet (because) I didn’t want him to get cold. “So I ran to the police station (to tell them) what happened.

“But when I got there the words couldn’t come out of my mouth so I said my child was missing.”

Jacobs - who has spent the past eight months behind bars - is due to stand trial for Taariq’s murder next week.

Police are also investigating the deaths of her two older children. Two-year-old Naeelah died nine years ago of a suspected cot death. Sabri, also two, died four years ago of a suspected asthma attack.

In her letter, the disturbed 30-year-old former creche teacher reveals how her unhappy marriage drove her to despair.

“I did everything that a wife should do to keep my husband happy,” she says. “I started stealing for him and his son so that we could survive.”

Jacobs now says she cannot bear living without the son she admits killing. “I miss Taariq so much, I think about him every day, what we used to do when he was alive. He was everywhere with me. I never walked anywhere without him. (It was) as if he was my husband.”

Jacobs’s distraught family say she wrote the harrowing letter to try and make people understand her torment at her actions.

Her sister Mishqah Hendricks, 25, says she broke down and cried after reading the letter.

“It took a lot of courage for her to write it,” Mishqah tells the Daily Voice. “She wanted people to know why she did this and how she feels. “We hope this will help her and that people will see her in a different way.”

Jacobs gave the letter - signed and dated August 13, 2012 - to her father after he visited her in Pollsmoor prison late last week.

“We visit her every Tuesday and Thursday. Zulfa gave the letter to my father (on Thursday) morning,” Mishqah added. “I burst into tears when I read the letter.

“My parents are having a tough time dealing with all of this. They are not reading the papers anymore.”

In her own words

The night she killed Taariq:

“I was on my way to my grandmother’s house. We were walking past sand and bushes and I sat down and Taariq was sitting next to me. I was crying and thinking where my life is now and what I went through for seven years with my husband.”

The moment she killed her son:

“By the time I realised what I was doing to my son it was too late. I couldn’t believe that I had just killed my son. I didn’t know what to do. I closed him with a jacket and covered his feet because I didn’t want him to get cold.”

Why she claimed Taariq was missing:

“I ran to the police station (to tell them) what had happened, but when I got there the words couldn’t come out of my mouth so I said my child was missing.”

Why she killed Taariq:

“He (husband) wanted to take my son away from me and I couldn’t let that happen.”

Missing Taariq:

“I miss Taariq so much, I think about him every day, what we used to do when he was alive. He was everywhere with me. I never walked anywhere without him. [It was] as if he was my husband.”

Her family:

“My father is not taking this so well. Too much stress will give him a heart attack.”

Her unhappy marriage:

“I did everything that a wife should do to keep my husband happy. I started stealing for him and his son so that we could survive.”

Daily Voice


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