Vereeniging -Matthews Thulani Bango (34) made his first appearance today at the Vereeniging Magistrate’s Court. He was arrested on the 4th of January on charges of murder of his girlfriend, Mantwa James (44). Matthews allegedly confessed to murdering her on Christmas Day. He reportedly kept her body wrapped in a blanket on the sofa in the house they lived in for two days, before burying her in a shallow grave at the back of their house in Putswastena, Sharpeville. SAPS exhumed the body on Monday the 4th of January when he was arrested.

Mantwa James

Attending the bail hearing was Mantwa’s cousin, Moeketsi Majola who expressed concern over the unfortunate incident, “It is very hard for the family to accept what happened to their daughter, sister and cousin. It is also very difficult for the neighbours who knew the couple.”

Also in attendance was Kwanele Holekane ka GBVF, represented by its founder, Cylia Nthabiseng. “I believe GBVF cases are not taken seriously, especially here at the Vereeniging Magistrate’s Court and I recommend cases to be taken to Palmridge as they handle cases much better. GBVF perpetrators should never be given bail, and the same goes for Thulani. As Kwanele Holekane Ka GBVF, we have started a petition to oppose bail for Thulani. We will keep doing the same for any accused persons until the law starts taking GBVF cases seriously,” says Cylia.

“It is sad that after all the marches and protests, women are still being raped and killed. It seems the more we try to conscientious the community on GBVF the more the cases rise. Churches or rather religious institutions ought to step up. A woman in an abusive relationship or marriage must not be encouraged to stay. In the end, we know it’s her decision, but she must know that it’s okay to walk out of an abusive marriage. She must know that she has support from her family and elders, whether it’s in the community or church,” added Cylia.

From Left, Moeketsi Majola, Cylia and media representatives pic courtesy of Kwanele Holekane KaGBVF

Sources say claim that Matthews was physically abusive to Mantwa. Apparently, on the fateful day, she had mentioned to friends and family that if she ever went missing, they should look for her body in the boyfriend’s yard. “He was very abusive, at times she would have scars, but she said she loved him and was never going to leave.”

Cylia, Founder of Kwanele olekane KaGBVF

“She knew that one day he would kill her, but still, she opted to stay with him because she loved him.”

Mantwa’s funeral will be held in Villiers on Friday the 7th.

The case was postponed to the 13th of January 2021.