Thendo Justice Munyai.

Counseling for grieving family of suicide victim


The family of a 24-year-old man who committed suicide during the festive season thanked the Tsia-Mutsha stakeholders' forum, who assisted them during the difficult time.

Following Thendo Justice Munyai's death, the family were devastated, hurting and failing to come to terms with the nature of his death, specifically at the time of the recent festivities.

The Vhembe Pastors' Forum, traditional healers' association representatives, the representatives from the traditional authority, local civic, ward counsellor and Munna Ndi Nnyi visited the bereaved family. “We appreciate the kind of courage and comfort that the different stakeholders - operating as a team - brought us,” said the deceased's mother, Ms Masala Mudau. “Thendo was my only son. I loved him so much that nothing could stop me from worrying and crying day and night about his death. Without the counselling, it was going to be a long journey to closure for us.”

Vhembe Pastors Forum's Rev TP Ramahala advised the family to refrain from seeking knowledge from “seers” about the cause of the deceased's decision to commit suicide. “We have had many cases where the so-called seers lied to families that they had only buried a wooden carving in the image of the deceased and that the deceased was still alive as a slave somewhere. Such false information is both malicious and destructive.”

He told the family to accept the death of their loved one and continue with life without putting blame on themselves or shifting blame to any other person.

Munna Ndi Nnyi's Bardwell Mufunwaini urged members of the family to stick together and comfort one another. “Death is not a good thing to happen in a family,” he said. “But we need to come to terms with it.”

The deceased's sister, Murendi Munyai, was the first member of the family to notice her brother hanging from a litchi tree. She cut the rope, thinking that he still had life in him at dawn, but unfortunately he was gone. “He was my only brother,” she wept. “He loved me and his niece (my daughter). I thank God for having allowed my brother's existence to touch our lives. May his soul rest in peace.”


Dr Bardwell Mufunwaini (left) and Rev TP Ramahala comfort the deceased's sister, Ms Murendi Munyai.


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Date:11 January 2018 - By: Tshifhiwa Mukwevho

Tshifhiwa Mukwevho

Tshifhiwa Given Mukwevho was born in 1984 in Madombidzha village, not far from Louis Trichardt in the Limpopo Province. After submitting articles for roughly a year for Limpopo Mirror's youth supplement, Makoya, he started writing for the main newspaper. He is a prolific writer who published his first book, titled A Traumatic Revenge in 2011. It focusses on life on the street and how to survive amidst poverty. His second book titled The Violent Gestures of Life was published in 2014.



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