'He was a very active guy': uncle speaks about death of Joburg school pupil

17 January 2020 - 20:06
By Ernest Mabuza
A grade 8 pupil from Parktown Boys' High School died during a school orientation camp.
Image: Sebabatso Mosamo A grade 8 pupil from Parktown Boys' High School died during a school orientation camp.

The family of the grade 8 pupil who died during a school camp say it was probably difficult to know who was missing as the children had all just started at the school.

Enock Mpianzi's uncle Sebastian Kodiemokawas one of the family members who identified the teen's body on Friday morning after it was retrieved by police divers.

Mpianzi disappeared on Wednesday when the makeshift raft he was on with other pupils from Parktown Boys' High capsized.

It was only discovered on Thursday that he was missing and police were notified.

Speaking to radio station 702 on Friday afternoon, Kodiemoka said the children on the school excursion did not know one another because they were new to the school.

“It must have been difficult to manage the children. He could have slipped in the water [on Wednesday] without being noticed.

“It was only in the morning [on Thursday] that it was discovered one of them was missing. This came from a friend who sat with him on the bus travelling to the lodge,” Kodiemoka said.

Kodiemoka said when they arrived at the lodge, where the children were staying, on Thursday evening, there was uncertainty over whether Mpianzi had drowned or disappeared into the bush.

Kodiemoka said on Friday morning, Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said they had found a body.

“After they took him out of the water, we identified the body. We confirmed our boy came out of the water,” Kodiemoka.

Asked if Mpianzi could swim, Kodiemoka said he was “a very active guy” who did not have any disability.

- An earlier version of this article incorrectly identified the boy's uncle as Sebastian Kodie Motha.