Overwhelmed by grief, a group of young people in Emaxesibeni in the Eastern Cape had to go up the mountain to pray for divine intervention, following the death of six youths in one week.
Five young people, including three members of two local football teams, died when their driver lost control of their Nissan NP 200 on 28 March.
Two of the players were from Young Challengers FC – Xola Magwagwadla and Nkosikhona Mashoai – while Yongama Mzolisa was from Amaxesibe FC.
Amaxesibe FC are the log leaders in Stream B of a soccer league that combines teams from Mt Ayliff, Mt Frere and Ntabankulu, while Young Challengers are second on the log.
Another Young Challengers player Alungile Qolo was the only survivor in the accident and remains in ICU in hospital.
Two other people who died in the accident were local soccer fans.
As if that was not enough, death struck again on Saturday when another Young Challengers footballer, 23-year-old Solomzi Lokothwayo, was attacked while sleeping in his room at his home.
The intruders overpowered the young man and stabbed him to death before carrying his body out of the property under the cover of darkness.
Neighbours said vicious dogs fought the killers off, forcing them to dump the lifeless body and run away.
It is not clear why Solomzi was killed but his friends say his father who works in Johannesburg had just deposited money for him to attend his upcoming soccer matches.
There has been so much outpouring of support from the community that when Umzimvubu Local Municipality held a Memorial Service for the young soccer stars, dozens of mourners watched the proceedings through the windows as the main town hall was filled to capacity.
Two players were buried last Saturday.
Magwagwadla will be laid to rest at Mahedeni location in Mt Ayliff on Wednesday 13 April while Lokothwayo will be buried on the following Saturday.
Young Challengers team chairman Samkelo Cawu is a broken man as the deceased formed the core of his team.
The people of Emaxesibeni are now well and truly deep in mourning. We at Scrolla.Africa say Thuthuzelekani, akuhlanga lungehlanga.
Image source: Ntu News