A MUIZENBERG High School matric pupil, murdered when she stood up to a man who had assaulted a disabled teen, has been hailed a hero by her school.
Janet Ntozini, 18, was stabbed three times in the back at the weekend after, according to an eyewitness, she had told a 23-year-old man he could not attack an unarmed disabled 19-yearold over a disagreement they had.
The eyewitness, who did not want to be named for fear of her safety, said Ntozini had seen the suspect wielding a knife when he approached the helpless 19-year-old.
Ntozini then told the suspect he should put his knife away and he could not attack an unarmed person, before he turned on her. “After she was stabbed on the side, she fell to the ground, and he stabbed her on the back,” said the witness.
Ntozini’s uncle, Sithabantu Sigonyela, had rushed her to her hospital, where she died soon after.
“We are grieving, it was so brutal and so sudden. She was just a schoolgirl standing up for another person,” Sigonyela said.
Pupils and staff at the school honoured Ntozini’s bravery by placing flowers at the school’s entrance.
Principal Leonie Jacobson said they were planning a memorial for Ntozini. Struggling to hold back tears, Jacobson said Ntozini had always cared for others, and she often stood up for what she believed in.
“We are devastated, it is still hard for us to process. Janet was an at-risk teenager herself, living in a society plagued by drugs and gangsterism.
“Through it all she always stood up for what she thought was right. Janet is a hero, she is Muizenberg High’s hero,” Jacobson said.
School governing body chairperson Simone Beukes said Ntozini’s murder highlighted how vulnerable young women were to violent crimes.“We received the news of her death with great sadness. Janet had shown so much potential to succeed in whatever she chose to do in life. Her murder once again shows the dangerous reality our children have to face every day,” Beukes said.
Police spokesperson FC van Wyk said the suspect had appeared in court yesterday. “The 23-year-old suspect was arrested later that evening and appeared in the Muizenberg Magistrate’s Court.”
The area was still volatile yesterday after residents, suspected to have acted out of anger at Ntozini’s murder, vandalised the house where the suspect apparently lives.Janet Ntozini
Education MEC Debbie Schäfer’s spokesperson Jessica Shelver said counselling was being provided to learners at the school who needed it.
By Francesca Villette - email@example.com
For more info see: http://www.iol.co.za/the-star