A piercing cry breaks the somber silence as a small coffin is lowered into the ground.
Hundreds have turned up to pay their last respects to two-year-old Kealeboga Monamodi, the little girl who was brutally murdered on Saturday.
The toddler’s heartbroken mother, Ompatile Monamodi weeps desperately as she says goodbye to her only daughter.
Ntlhantlhe village is in a state of shock. It is evident in the pained faces of the countless mourners gathered at Wednesday’s funeral.
The sleepy settlement, located roughly 70km from Gaborone, was plunged into the headlines at the weekend after the gruesome discovery of Kealeboga’s body discarded in the bush.
It is thought she was hit on the head with a stone and died from her injuries.
A local man and an acquaintance of the dead girl’s mother, 39-year-old Mothusi Ratshipo has been arrested in connection with the incident.
It is alleged Ratshipo, who appeared before Lobatse Magistrate Court on Monday, killed the infant after Ompatile rejected his love proposal.
When The Voice travelled to the family’s homestead on Wednesday afternoon, we find them busy preparing for the burial.
Kealeboga’s corpse was returned to them earlier in the day.
The family’s spokesperson, Andrew Monamodi explained they were still too hurt to share details of what transpired on the day their ‘bundle of joy’ died.
Trembling with emotion, Andrew, who is an uncle to Ompatile, said, “There is not much we can say at this stage. As you may be aware, the matter is still under police investigations and by making statements in the media we may found ourselves jeopardizing those investigations.”
A resident in the village, however, told The Voice that the suspect was not Ompatile’s boyfriend as had originally been reported.
“The two had been drinking together earlier in the day. He proposed love to her and she turned him down,” claimed the resident.
“The suspect was seen with the toddler. Later she was found dead near his place,” they added sadly.
The tragedy has left many in the village of Ntlhantlhe both shocked and angry.
One villager, who preferred anonymity, expressed her concern at the escalating crime rate in the area.
“There is a lot that happens in the village. We hardly sleep, it’s only that these issues never make it to the media!” she exclaimed.
66th Y-Care pre walk at Marokolwane farms
The Y-Care team in association with The Voice took on a 20km walk at Marokolwane Farms in honour of the late Mrs Beata Kasale-Kabango this past weekend.
Thieves rob BFA offices and Cricket Club
Central Police Station (CPS) are investigating a case in which thieves broke into Botswana Football Association (BFA) office early last Thursday morning.
Station Commander, Superintendent Mothusi Phadi, says they have not made any arrest in connection with the break in and theft.
He said according to two night watchmen who were on duty, they were attacked by a group of eight men who beat them up and tied their hands and legs before breaking into the office.
He said their preliminary investigations indicate that a Canon camera and a mobile phone, all worth P15 000 were stolen.
“We received a report around 4am on Thursday. When the police arrived at the scene, they found the security officers’ two dogs dead. We suspect they were poisoned during the attack of the officers because we found a piece of meat and the dogs had some white foam coming out of their mouth. The security officers were taken to the hospital to be treated for trauma and they have since been released,” said Phadi
The Station Commander said there was also a break in at the Cricket club and they believe that after hitting the BFA offices, the culprits broke into the bar and stole alcohol beverages of an undisclosed amount.
Phadi said investigations were still ongoing and that they are yet to make any arrest.
Young Author Pens Kofi Annan tribute
Freelance journalist and acclaimed local author, 26-year-old Khumoetsile Magonare has published a book titled ‘Kofi Annan, An African Dream’.
The book is a fitting tribute to the former United Nations Secretary General and tells the story of his life, leadership and quotes that inspired the world.
The Ghanaian diplomat, a co-recipient of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize, passed away at the age of 80 back in August 2018.
Devastated by his death, the young author managed to find productivity in her pain.
“I was mourning as the rest of the world but developed an inspiration which became a dream during the grieving period. I took my diary and wrote down the idea and that is how this book came up,” explained the Pitsane native in a brief interview with Voice Entertainment.
Khumoetsile, as the wordsmith is widely known, described Kofi Annan’s quotes as a living testimony to the life he lead.
“He was an example to all and his quotes emphasise his faith in the youth. He believed in the minds and existence of young people to make a change.”
One of the quotes chronicled in the book reads, “Literacy is the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realise his or her full potential.”
Another quote that stands out is, ‘We are not only responsible for each others security. We are also in some measure responsible for each others welfare.’
“This is a book anyone can pick up in the morning and flip open on any page while taking a cup of coffee. It’s a must have for motivation,” stressed Khumoetsile whose previous work includes ‘A Pillar of Hope’ as well as co-authoring ‘The Reality Check’ with Nlingi Simon.
“Apart from writing books I am the founder and host of ‘The Truth With Khumo’ which is found online or on Facebook,” continued the creative, whose prowess with the pen is matched by her mastery of the spoken word.
Retailing for P200, ‘Kofi Annan, An African Dream’ is set to hit local bookshops by the end of the month.