The family was still in shock and pain when The Citizen visited Loyiso’s home yesterday. Silence dominated the house in Finetown, south of Johannesburg, and his father, Zandisile Jijana, was surrounded by family members trying to comfort him after his son’s tragic death.
The 19-year-old was hit by a train at the Chiawelo Station while on his way to Orlando High School in Soweto. A tearful Jijana described Loyiso’s excitement about his future upon finishing matric.
He said the accident stole the future of his child. “My child promised me a beautiful life, he wanted to be a pilot and he had just recently came back from the airport during the school holidays to fetch forms and information about becoming a pilot.
“It could be better if I was talking about my Loyiso who had a broken arm (after the accident), but it breaks my heart to be talking about my son whom I will no longer see,” said the grieving father. Though reports surfaced yesterday that Loyiso died while he was surfing on the moving train and that he was beheaded in the accident, his father denied the reports, labeling them unfounded.
“My child was coming from another train , running to catch train number 9017 at 8am, but because the train was full, my child could not get in, so he missed the step and fell on the tracks,” explained Jijana.
Jijana said his child was too soft to surf on trains. “I know him very well, he would never do something like that – he has been using trains since he was young.” Jijana said when he arrived on the scene after being called by Loyiso’s friend, the security guards told him that there was a train which was cancelled, so commuters of that train had to board the other train.
“The train was too full because of the delays caused by the lack of enough trains, and that is our struggle in the Vaal line. When trains are full, everyone fight to get in so they push each other, my child was unfortunate to not make it to the train.
“My child missed an opportunity to become a pilot, to be among the learners who would be learning with tablets,” added the aggrieved father. Jijana also dismissed claims that his son was beheaded. He said he was cut on the top of his head. “His body was not cut into two pieces.”
He said the 19-year-old could not wait to finish his matric so that he could send his father back to the Eastern Cape where he would work and provide for the family. “I lost everything, Loyiso gave me hope. When I looked at him everyday I knew that one day I would be a proud father, but I lost him.”