Kgothatso Mdunana’s family ’overwhelmed’ by donations to ensure her body’s repatriated from China

By Chevon Booysen Time of article published May 17, 2021

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Cape Town – A Johannesburg family are preparing for the return of the body of 24-year-old Kgothatso Mdunana, who died in Hangzhou, China, when she fell from a 13th-floor apartment window on April 30 while visiting a friend.

The body of Mdunana, a final-year civil engineering student at Shandong University, will soon be returned home for burial, her family said, so they can bury her on home soil.

In a crowdfunding campaign, the family had hoped to raise R350 000 for repatriation costs, but donors and Good Samaritans rallied to exceed that target and donations streamed in, garnering R616 097 by yesterday.

In their BackaBuddy campaign, the family said they were not prepared for the high cost of repatriation fees as her travel insurance had expired.

BackaBuddy’s Zane Groenewald said more than 250 local and international donors contributed to the fund.

Mdunana’s mother, Nomsa, was overwhelmed by the support.

“On behalf of the Mdunana family, I would like to thank you for your generous donation for the repatriation costs of my daughter, Kgothatso Mdunana. We are extremely thankful and have no words to describe our deepest gratitude.

’’Kgothatso’s spirit will rest in eternal peace with the assistance received from all you. Again, thank you for your support, may the Almighty increase threefold where you have taken out so that you can help other families in need,” said Nomsa.

Department of International Relations and Co-operation spokesperson Lunga Ngqengelele said they had been assisting the family with consular services to ensure Mdunana's body was returned.

“We have been in contact with the family since April 30 and have been assisting since then with all services they need. As a government, we are forbidden from offering monetary assistance, but we have linked the family with the authorities who will assist with the repatriation, but this was for their own cost,” said Ngqengelele.

“In terms of the reports (of cause of death), we will rely on the authorities to share that information with us,” said Ngqengelele.

Cape Times

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