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Nomangwane Mrwetyana dreading first Christmas without daughter Uyinene

Nomangwane Mrwetyana, the mother of slain Uyinene, said the family would light a candle and say a prayer at the lunch table in honour of her daughter.

Uyinene Mrwetyana. Picture: facebook.com

CAPE TOWN - As thousands of people prepare to celebrate Christmas with their families, there's one home where there'll be little by way of celebration.

Uyinene Mrwetyana's family is preparing for a hard week as they mark their first Christmas without her.

The 19-year-old student was raped and murdered at the Claremont Post Office in August.

Uyinene’s murder in August sparked a nationwide outcry and a groundswell of rolling protests against the killings of women and children.

Exactly three months after her death, the family launched the Uyinene Mrwetyana Foundation in Makhanda as their way of also fighting back against the scourge of gender-based violence.

Uyinene Mrwetyana's mother, Nomangwane, is now facing the prospect of Christmas without her bright and bubbly daughter.

"It's not going to be the same at all. There'll be the sense of emptiness... a void."

Christmas with the Mrwetyana's is usually spent in rural Centane.

But this year, Nomangwane said they’d made no special plans and she was dreading the day.

"I'm dreading this Christmas. It was the most horrible year of my life."

She said the family would light a candle and say a prayer at the lunch table in honour of her slain daughter.