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Mother of 4 kids murdered by their dad struggling to cope

During Sibusiso Mpungose’s sentencing on Wednesdays, the High Court in Pietermaritzburg heard that his wife, Xoli, was not able to work since her children were hanged last month.

Sibusiso Mpungose appears in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on 6 November 2019. Picture: Nkosikhona Duma/EWN

PIETERMARITZBURG - The mother of four children killed by their father said she was struggling to cope with the loss after he was handed four life terms.

During Sibusiso Mpungose’s sentencing on Wednesday, the High Court in Pietermaritzburg heard that his wife, Xoli, was not able to work since her children were hanged in September.

The High Court heard that Xoli, who is a teacher, was struggling to cope and was reminded about her children every time she saw other children.

She previously told the court she saw no reason for living after losing her children. She also said Mpungose had been a good father and husband but she became unhappy in the marriage when he started accusing her of infidelity.

Her sister Mthobisi Mlaba said the family was trying to be supportive.

“We are grateful that he got the life sentence, even though it won’t bring our kids back. We can at least comfort ourselves knowing he’ll be in jail for a long time.”

The court also heard that he killed the children because he was angry and depressed over marital woes.

Judge Sharmaine Balton said Mpungose showed no remorse and only pitied himself.

“Although you tendered an apology to your wife, family and the family of your step-daughter, your counsel submitted that you wished to convey to the court that you have not yet come to the realisation of the seriousness of what you have done. You’re in disbelief, not that you’re remorseful.”

Mpungose also faces a separate charge of rape for which he is expected to plead later this month.

KwaZulu-Natal Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza agreed with the judge that Mpungose showed no remorse.

Judge Balton said she hoped the sentence would serve as a deterrent to others like Mpungose.