Pretoria – A 31-year-old woman, Maphephi Alinah Mokwena, and her 21-year-old accomplice appeared at the Bethlehem Magistrate’s Court yesterday for allegedly killing Mokwena’s husband and two girls aged 10 and 14 and also attempted murder of her 11-year-old girl.
According to Free State police, Mokwena served the family brown beans before they went to school and work on Wednesday, June 22.
“The children complained of stomach pain at school and were taken to hospital where they lost their lives. Their father also fell ill while at work and was taken to hospital where he also passed away,” said police spokesperson Captain Phumelelo Dhlamini.
Dhlamini said a post-mortem was done on Thursday and it revealed that the cause of death is poisoning.
“During further investigation, the mother of the children admitted that she bought poison called Temik to poison the soup. She was arrested and detained at Bethlehem police station.”
The mother has been remanded in custody until June 30 for a formal bail application.
Mantwa was released on warning and is expected to appear again in court with Maphephi.
Its still unclear how the women are related.
In a similar incident earlier this month, a 37-year-old mother of two was released on bail at the Nigel Magistrate’s Court after she allegedly poisoned her two children, which left her seven-year-old daughter in ICU and her 16-year-old son dead.
National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson, Lumka Mahanjana, said that on June 6, the mother allegedly poisoned her children after she was scammed out of large amounts of money.
“After giving them poison, it is alleged that she drove with them to the Free State province. When they got to Frankfort, the children started falling ill and she took them to the nearest hospital.
“Upon arrival, the boy child passed on. The girl was admitted and has been in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) since. When the doctor realised that the children were poisoned, he called the police, who interviewed the accused.
“The accused mother admitted to poisoning the children, because she was scammed out of a large amount of money and had no means to take care of the children, even paying school fees,” said Mahanjana.
The mother was arrested and transferred to Nigel.
The matter was postponed to August 24, 2022, for further investigation.