The family has been thrown into severe pain and mourning following the death of their beloved son. It is so painful how he passed away and the circumstances surrounding his death.
The son of a prominent local politician has died less than a week after being stoned by an angry mob in Bloemhof.
Alfonso Arends, 17, the son of EFF provincial secretary George Nyakama, died as a result of his injuries in a Klerksdorp hospital on Thursday morning, days after he was attacked with stones and bottles by dozens of community members at a social event in the North West town.
Nyakama said that Alfonso had left Kimberley last Friday to visit his grandmother in Bloemhof for the Christmas weekend.
“As I understand it, my son attended a street bash in Bloemhof on the Saturday where he was apparently involved in a quarrel with a boy from the main township in the area,” said the distraught father.
“This other boy then went to one of the tents that had been erected by the event organisers and came out with about 50 to 60 of his friends and family. From what witnesses have told me, Alfonso tried to run away from the crowd but they chased after him while pelting him with stones and bottles. He ran but couldn’t get away.
“They eventually chased him into a yard where he climbed onto a roof in an effort to escape his attackers but they continued to stone him until he eventually fell off.
“I’m not sure what the quarrel was about but a relative who was at the event said that Alfonso was sober. He would not have been able to climb onto a roof if he had been drunk. These people were out to kill him and were aiming for his head.”
The teenager, who suffered a fractured skull and massive internal bleeding, was transported to a local hospital in Bloemhof. He was later airlifted to Klerksdorp where he died in ICU on Thursday morning.
“While most people have been able to enjoy the festive season with friends and family, this has been a very difficult time for us,” said Nyakama.
“Since he was admitted to hospital in Bloemhof, we could see his condition deteriorating. He is my son and we look a lot alike and this made it all the more painful for me to see him like that.
“I was able to spend five minutes with him on Thursday morning just before he passed away.”
Nyakama added that the grief caused by his son’s death was compounded by the fact that his attackers were never formally charged in Bloemhof despite the fact that the main instigator was apparently apprehended by members of the SAPS shortly after the incident.
“My son died like a dog and it is as if those responsible are being allowed to get away with it.
“The police were there after my son was hurt and made an arrest but this suspect was never taken to the police station. He was just driven into the location and dropped off. We checked with the police in Bloemhof and a case was never opened.
“Even before his death, the fact that my son had to be transported by helicopter from Bloemhof to Klerksdorp shows that this was not just a common assault and that his injuries were very serious.
“We have now opened a case with the police in Klerksdorp but will be following up on the way the police handled the matter in Bloemhof and taking legal action against them. It seems as if the police may be conspiring with these criminals.”
Nyakama thanked all those who sent messages of condolence and support including provincial DA leader Andrew Louw, MPL Boitumelo Babuseng, ANC Chief Whip Gail Parker and MPL Maruping Lekwene and the secretary of the provincial legislature, Patrick Moopelwa.
Meanwhile, police in the North West confirmed that the matter is under investigation but added that no arrests have been made.
“The police are aware of the incident,” said provincial communication officer, Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone.
“A case of assault was opened in Jouberton near Klerksdorp. It has been transferred to Bloemhof for investigation and the charge will be amended to murder. No one has been arrested at this stage.”