Son’s death by accident leaves family grieving

Kathorus Mail editor, Zaid Khumalo

Once again, this tragic accident reminds every South African about the high crime rate in our troubled land. It is indeed a sad indictment on our over-worked and under-staffed policemen and women when parents have to carry weapons to school to guard themselves and their children against criminals.

It is even a further indication of how society has been conditioned by the high incidents of crime in our neighborhoods to be vigilant to the point of causing themselves and their loved ones harm. As the family mourns the death of their beloved son, it is sad that this loving father, whose only mistake was to carry his firearm to school to protect both himself and his son from criminals, now also has to face criminals charges.

My heart goes to the Tshabalala family in their hour of need as they try to deal with the loss of their son under very tragic circumstances. It is indeed sad that the family had to learn the hard way that owning a firearm does not and cannot always be the answer to the violent and barbaric life and high incidents of crime in their neighborhoods many families in South Africa have been exposed to.

Judging by the growing number of young, unemployed youth roaming the streets of our townships at any given hour of the day and night, I sometimes get the feeling that young people have been thrown a curve ball by the authorities.

Logic tells me there are thousands of young people who could benefit immensely in the different trade and skills offered by the military if our youth were to be conscripted into the national army. Firstly, the number of young people hooked on nyaope would be reduced drastically as more young people found more resourceful means of engaging their time such as conscripts.

There are hundreds if not thousands of young boys and girls who would find a more fulfilling and beneficial life in the military. Firstly, the numbers of loitering youths who are often easily lured into crime and drugs would decrease and there would be fewer addicts and criminals on our streets.

Instead of encouraging teenage girls to have babies by offering them monetary grants, conscripting them into the military, would instead instil better moral values and self-respect. Fewer young girls would have unwanted babies.

Instead, they would have more time to make better life choices and options about their lives and career choices. Boys will have less time for all the negatives aspects of life that has turned many into drug addicts and alcoholics at a young age.

With more young people undergoing military conscription, the better the chances of them growing into law abiding citizens. And with more law abiding citizens in our communities, there is hope for building happy families and happy families produce happy and healthy children.

We definitely have to start somewhere to get somewhere with our efforts to build a better society. By raising our children to be honest and hard-working, we will be paving the road for a better society in a peaceful country.

The head of the Kathorus Family, Child and Domestic Violence Unit, Col Israel Mdluli, has appealed to parents, particularly mothers, to refrain from neglecting their children. Mdluli said most children are often reported as missing by their mothers, who often leave them alone and unattended when going off to run errands.

Mdluli warned that police resources are often brought into use at great expense to the SAPS, only for the reported missing child to be found playing with other children in a neighbourhood yard. Mdluli explained most of these assumed missing children are left by their mothers who often go to church or to a funeral in another part of the township and then report them missing when they cannot locate them on the return.

“We’re appealing to mothers to ensure that they’re children are left with known neighbours or family members. The police spend a lot of time trying to locate these children who are often neglected by their uncaring and negligent parents,” explained Mdluli.

  AUTHOR
Zaid Khumalo

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