The mood was sombre as about 800 pupils gathered at the Ilitha Park Presbyterian Church last Wednesday to bid farewell to a schoolmate who died a fortnight ago.
Musa Mbotoli, 10, in Grade 4 at Intshayelelo Primary School drowned at a Khayelitsha wetland behind SST section in Town Two.
His class teacher, Nondumiso Mahebese, said his fellow pupils were distraught when they heard about the passing of Musa.
“He was a quiet boy who got along with others and his absence leaves his classmates with questions. They are hurting,” said Ms Mahebese.
Prinicipal Mxolisi Mbobo said they were sad and shocked when they heard the news of Musa’s death.
“It’s not something easy to deal with when a young life is lost. Our hearts are with his parents and family at large. We hope as time goes by they will heal. I am happy that our children have found closure and were able to attend the memorial service in large numbers,” said Mr Mbobo.
Neighbour Lelethu Magoqwana said this was the second drowning in the area.
“We have been warning the children not to swim in that river but they always go there. The day Musa died, we last saw them playing in front of the house and they disappeared for some time before we heard cries for help.”
Karate coach Nwabisa Jiya described Musa as a “talented boy” who showed potential.
“He was new in the club but you could see he took instructions well. We will sadly miss him,” said Ms Jiya.
Distraught father Thembinkosi Mbotoli thanked the school and the community for their support. Musa was buried in the Eastern Cape last Saturday.