Sagren Govindasamy with his wife, Jane, and their daughters, Rackelle, left, and Denisha, right. Sagren is the sole survivor in the family.
Sagren Govindasamy with his wife, Jane, and their daughters, Rackelle, left, and Denisha, right. Sagren is the sole survivor in the family.

My family has been ripped from me, says Phoenix father

By Kailene Pillay Time of article published Sep 25, 2018

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Durban - Three days after his wife and two daughters were found murdered in their Phoenix home, Sagren Govindasamy has spoken for the first time of his devastation at losing his family.

He also denied claims that the man arrested for the murders was known to him or his family.

Govindasamy said the tragedy had turned his life upside down.

He said he was also struggling to deal with malicious lies and rumours being circulated on Facebook.

Govindasamy, who turned 49 on Monday, said his wife and daughters had planned a special dinner to celebrate his birthday. Instead, he was planning their funerals.

Govindasamy’s wife, Jane, 44, and daughters, Denisha, 22, and Rackelle, 16, were found dead inside their two-bedroom Tasvir Mansions flat in Longcroft, on Friday morning.

“I am devastated and so is the rest of the extended family. My family has been ripped from me. I don’t know what to do or what to say. I don’t know what’s happening,” said Govindasamy.

He had just come off night shift late on Thursday when he unsuccessfully tried to enter the family’s flat.

When he could not locate his wife and daughters, Govindasamy went to his mother’s nearby home where he spent the night. He returned to his flat on Friday morning.

Govindasamy managed to gain entry to the flat through a window and made the gruesome discovery of Jane and Rackelle’s bodies.

Police were then alerted. A sniffer dog later found Denisha’s body inside a wardrobe. It is believed the victims were murdered at different times with the killer pouncing on each as they arrived home.

A 45-year-old man was arrested on Saturday. According to the police, the man is known to the family. He will appear in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

Govindasamy, who was with his sister, Thaveshni, at their mother’s house on Monday, said his family always did things together.

“Denisha and Rackelle were obedient and loving children. They were independent and I never had to worry about them,” he said.

Govindasamy said he married Jane, his childhood sweetheart, 22 years ago.

Jane worked as an administration clerk at a logistics company in Sea Cow Lake, Rackelle was in Grade 11, and Denisha was unemployed.

Thaveshni described her brother’s family as humble, saying they never had any problems and were close-knit.

She said her brother was struggling to sleep. “His thoughts are constantly on his family’s final moments.”

Yesterday, the family also dispelled rumours that the suspect was a friend.

“There are reports that this man was our friend. I don’t know him. We never had men in our house. The police told us that a suspect was arrested and we read on Facebook that this man is known to us, but he is not,” Govindasamy said.

He pleaded with people to stop sharing “fake stories” on social media.

“The police need the space and time to do their investigation. It is also so hurtful to read people’s statuses assuming what had happened. People need to stop spreading lies and should wait for the police to reveal the outcome of their investigation,” he said.

Denisha’s fiancé Macaelin Padayachee shared an emotional tribute on Facebook which had a thousand shares. He proposed to Denisha last year and the couple had an engagement party at home.

He wrote: “Baby we had so many goals that we were supposed to achieve together. We were supposed to get married early next year, planned to go to Thailand for our honeymoon.”The funerals are expected to take place on Saturday.

Police Minister Bheki Cele visited the crime scene on Sunday. He also urged community members to avoid giving credence to rumours on social media. “You confuse the situation, you confuse the investigation.

“Some of the people (who use social media), they fight their own battles on social media. Others are criminals that are trying to (distort) the thinking line that police are trying to follow. Allow the police to do their work,” said Cele.

The Mercury

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