Home South African 11-month-old baby survives family massacre in the Free State

11-month-old baby survives family massacre in the Free State


The baby was hit with a knobkierie and survived while other members of his family were shot and burnt inside their homes in the Free State.

File image: Keran Ducasse

AN 11-MONTH-old baby boy survived a massacre in which a family of five were killed in the Free State.

The baby was hit in the face with a knobkierie while other victims were shot and burnt inside their homes.

The boy is in a serious condition in hospital.

Police said they received a report that some people had been killed in Marakong village, QwaQwa, on April 4 at around 3am.

Free State police spokesperson Colonel Thandi Mbambo said the police went to the scene where they found the body of Moliehi Thoabala, 38, with a gunshot wound to the stomach.

Her husband, Safolo Mofokeng, 36, was found burnt in their house.

“In another house, the bodies of a mother, Relebohile Lemeko, 48, her daughter, Masabata Lemeko, 25, and son, Tatolo Lemeko, 22, were found burnt inside a shack, while the 11-month-old grandson was allegedly hit with a knobkierie on the nose and is currently receiving medical attention at a local hospital,” Mbambo said.

She said four children managed to escape in the second attack and reported the incidents to a relative, who then informed the police and rushed the child to hospital.

“The motive for the killing is currently unknown and a case of murder, arson and attempted murder has been registered for further investigation.”

Free State provincial commissioner Major-General Solly Lesia and Thabo Mofutsanyan district commander Major Jan Tsotsetsi have launched a manhunt to find the killers.

“We request the public to assist us with information that may lead to the identification and/or arrest of the perpetrators. Anyone with information should please contact Detective Captain Matlakala Mokwena at 078 759 3154 or Crime Stop at 08600 10111, alternatively send information via MySAPS App,” Major-General Lesia said.