There has been a public outpouring of rage and grief in response to the murder of 12-year-old Sibusiso Dakuse, a boy who loved music and basketball.
His was reported missing on Thursday February 27, after leaving his Mandela Park home the day before.
His family believed he was sleeping at his grandmother’s home.
The Grade 4 Sentinel Primary School pupil’s body was found among the reeds on the Kronendal Farm last Friday.
His 23-year-old basketball coach, Marvin Minnaar, was arrested on Saturday February 29.
According to Hout Bay station spokeswoman Brigadier Novela Potelwa, he was the last person seen with Sibusiso before the child vanished.
Mr Minnaar appeared in the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court on Monday March 2 where the State said he had made a full confession to the murder of Sibusiso.
Mr Minnaar was remanded into custody, and the case was postponed to Tuesday March 17.
The details of how Sibusiso died have not yet been revealed, but Brigadier Potelwa said: “More details on this investigation are expected to emerge in court.”
In a statement, the Hout Bay Community Police Forum expressed its condolences to the boy’s family.
“We share the sadness and rage of the barbaric death of one of the children in our community.”
News of Sibusiso’s death came the same week as murdered 8-year-old Tazne van Wyk’s funeral; the slaying of 7-year-old Emaan Solomons in Ocean View gang violence and the discovery of 7-year-old Reagan Gertse’s body in bushes on a riverbank in Tulbagh.
Nonsipho Magubane, of Mandela Park, said Sibusiso’s murder had left many sad and puzzled.
“Everybody is struggling to understand why this person would want to harm, yet alone, kill a little boy that way. It’s pure evil, and we have to worry now about our children.”
Ms Magubane knew Sibusisio. She can’t understand why anyone would harm him.
“He was forever playing in the road with the other children, and I am in shock, to only think that could have been my child as well. This person does not deserve to still be alive.”
Justin Konga, also from Mandela Park, said: “The boy’s family will suffer without him. This person will get bail or eat free food and get free shelter for killing another person. It’s not right at all. All these children here are scared now. So who is next?”
A video has gone viral on social media showing Sibusiso reciting a poem at Kronendal Music Academy. He had recently joined the project and had been due to give his first solo performance at its concert.
“He was to sing a solo at his first gig with us this month. A sweet and talented boy, his tragic death has left us all shocked,” the project said in a statement.
Ward councillor Roberto Quintas was at Mr Minnaar’s court appearance, and he also visited Sibusiso’s family.
“The self-confessed killer, a person known and trusted by young people in his care as an assistant coach, has inadvertently created a sense of fear, betrayal and anger in our community,” Mr Quintas said.
He called on the community to remain calm and let the law take its course.
“It does not help our communities to be exposed to more fear and violence, and I encourage all persons to not allow their emotions to cloud their judgement and to not take the law into their own hands.”
Sibusiso also attended the Kronendal Music Academy. In a statement, its director, Dwyn Griesel, said: “We are cut to the core with grief and sadness.”
The academy would ride this weekend’s Cape Town Cycle Tour in honour of Sibusiso, she said.
“Despite being exhausted beyond words, emotionally and physically, my KMA colleague, Andile Petelo, and I, are still committed to riding on Sunday in the Cape Town Cycle Race, which we do every year to raise funds for our NGO. And we are doing it as we will be riding in honour of little Sibusiso.”
The 12-year-old’s murder had again shown
“the urgent need for safe havens like KMA for our vulnerable children. Your child is my child”.
Sentinel Primary School did not respond to requests for comment by the time of going to print.