Siphesihle Chauke, who was killed in front of her mother.

“My daughter died in my arms and I’ll never give up the fight to get justice for her.”

This was the pledge made by Tsakane Chauke, a grieving mother whose 13-year-old daughter Siphesihle was gunned down in front of her in a May 2016 botched hijacking at their Meadowlands, Soweto, home. 

For months, the face of her child’s killer has stuck in her memory.

Chauke has waged a two-year battle to find her child’s killers after she said she received little help from police.

Mduduzi Dlamini yesterday appeared in the Orlando Magistrate’s Court on charges of murder and hijacking following his arrest last month.

Reliving the horrors of that 2016 morning, Chauke said her nephew had just reversed his car out of the family yard when he ran back into the house saying two gun-wielding men had approached him.

She ran outside to see what was going on. She was followed by her daughter in her school uniform.

Chauke said Siphesihle, who was a Grade 8 pupil, fought back, telling the robbers they would not steal her brother’s car, when one of the robbers shot her in the chest.

“My daughter said to me: ‘Mama, I have been shot'," the mother said.

Her daughter died in the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital after being rushed there by a neighbour. “I removed my child’s school jersey, closed her eyes and promised to find her killers,” Chauke said.

The alleged killer’s face was forever etched in her memory.

Things came to a head in June when she saw the man, who she maintained was Dlamini, driving past her home in a different car. After informing the police and being told to alert law enforcement when she saw him again, Chauke said she saw the man again outside Phomolong train station and called for help.

“The police arrived and arrested him, but I am the one who caught him. I had promised myself that I would not wait for police to arrest the suspect. What if justice would never be served; how was I going to live with myself?” a distraught Chauke asked.

Phindi Mjonondwane, spokesperson for the Gauteng NPA, said the State had prima facie evidence against the accused. 

@khayakoko88


The Star