Security guard Matlhomola Mabelane had been called back from leave by his employers as the uprising at Lonmin mine began – only to be killed days later, allegedly by striking miners.
According to reports at the time, Mabelane was burned to death alongside his colleague, Hassan Fundi, on Saturday, August 12. Mine officials discovered their bodies the following Monday.
Mabelane’s 83-year-old mother said she had begged her son to stay on leave and not to become involved in the strike.
“I told him not to go but he insisted on going,” his mother said. “He was dedicated to his job, family and myself. He was loyal. He was supposed to come and see me as he always did when he was off. I called and called, but he did not answer his phone.”
Mabelane, is survived by his wife, Linah, and three children. He lived with his family in Damonsville outside Brits, North West.
“He looked after me. He was at my service and on call every time I needed him. I will never find another son like him. He came to his house every Sunday. He wanted me to be happy all the time. He was special and everything to me,” she said. – Sipho Masondo