A 25-year-old woman, Nkosiphile Nkambule, has died after she and her daughter were trapped in a burning house that was allegedly set alight by her boyfriend, Morgan Mashiyane, who is also the father of her child.
According to Mpumalanga police spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi, the woman managed to shield her 6-year-old daughter from sustaining burn wounds, but lost her own life in the process.
The incident took place in Kwaggafontein on Tuesday after an argument between the couple.
“A preliminary report suggests that the boyfriend wanted to perish with the victims, but when he saw the blaze, he became timid and started banging [on the] windows begging for help,” Hlathi said.
Neighbours responded to his call and, after opening the door, he ran away.
Nkambule and her daughter were rescued from the burning house and rushed to the hospital. It appeared that the girl suffered no burns and was treated for smoke inhalation only, but Nkambule succumbed to her wounds on Thursday.
“The police conducted an investigation and immediately arrested Mashiyane, who was already trying to abscond the area, and found him with burn wounds. He was firstly taken to hospital for medical assistance where he was treated and discharged.
“On Friday, Mashiyane made his first appearance at the Mkobola Magistrate’s Court and was remanded in custody pending a formal bail application on 28 August,” Hlathi said.
Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant General Mondli Zuma strongly condemned the incident and said such behaviour should never be tolerated.