'Strangers You Know'. Picture: Supplied
'Strangers You Know'. Picture: Supplied

'Strangers You Know' looks at GBV cases in SA

By Alyssia Birjalal Time of article published Jun 8, 2021

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In “Strangers You Know”, coming to M-Net later this month, viewers will get to see some of South Africa’s most heinous gender-based violence crimes that made the news.

“Strangers You Know”, a true story will unpack each case through heart-wrenching interviews with family members and friends, and the analysis of the lead investigators, forensic pathologists, and prosecutors involved in each case.

From the heartbreaking story of Palesa Madiba, a young student at the University of Johannesburg, who was murdered and buried in a shallow grave in the backyard of her friend’s home in Soweto, to the unbelievable case of convicted family killer Henri van Breda, who killed his parents and brother in the Western Cape, each story will take viewers into key moments to uncover how these unsuspecting victims were brutally killed by someone they knew.

It will also analyse the overwhelming evidence that perpetrators left behind at the crime scene.

Chwayitisa Futshane, executive producer, said most of the eight episodes are about gender-based violence.

“Some of the families we spoke to reached a point where they felt it was time to tell their loved one’s story, hoping that in some way their story can help another woman – whether it serves as a warning for other women or it encourages women to walk away from very difficult situations at the home,” said Futshane.

Wynand Grobler, executive producer at Combined Artistic Productions said while many of the cases may be familiar to the public at large, each episode was carefully crafted in a uniquely cinematic style.

“It delves into the finest details of complex narratives that transcend race, income or status in society. To the ordinary man, the motives behind these crimes defy logic, as do many of the senseless crimes committed across South Africa each day.

“’Strangers You Know’ drives home the reality that hidden behind the murder stats are people you may know. This series pays homage to each victim, their families and those who worked tirelessly to resolve each case to ensure justice is served,” said Grobler.

Jan du Plessis, director of M-Net Channels said th country was fighting an ongoing battle against GBV and he hoped this docuseries would encourage more people to speak out.

“We hope that by shining a light on some of SA’s most heinous high-profile cases, we honour the victims of these crimes and encourage more people to speak out.

“We also aim to educate millions of South Africans about the impact of gender-based violence,” Du Plessis said.

Strangers You Know” will premiere on M-Net (DStv Channel 101) on Sunday, June 27 at 8pm.

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