Ntando Duma's childhood pain: My father was really abusive and set our shack alight
In a telling interview with TshisaLIVE actress and TV personality Ntando Duma has opened up about the painful childhood memories she has of growing up in an abusive home.
Even though Ntando may appear to be one of the most cheerful people in the world today, the pain of watching her father beat her mom has haunted her for years.
"I can still remember some of the things that happened, now," Ntando told TshisaLIVE recently.
She said that her father would drink and come home upset. He would then apparently take his anger out on his family by beating them.
"My father was an alcoholic and used to drink a lot, he was very abusive. The most tragic thing is me and my siblings would often cry because we were seeing him beating our mother, and he would then beat all of us too," Ntando recalled.
She recounted how one day her father came home drunk and ended up setting the family's shack alight.
"We used to live in a shack in Soweto and one day he (her father) came home really drunk and instead of knocking and asking for us to let him in, he set the whole shack alight. We were inside. We had to call an ambulance and neighbours to help us.
"It was so horrible. We were screaming. My mother threw us all out of the window and then she tried to find a way out for herself," Ntando said.
Ntando's mother decided to move her children to Orange Farm when Ntando was only six years old, after the abuse apparently became too much.
"My dad was really abusive. And my mother wanted us, as her children, to be away from the whole situation and sent us to live with our grandmother," Ntando explained.
She said that her mother would often visit them on weekends to bring them food and clothes, but that her contact with her father became scarce until he eventually "just disappeared".
"He passed away in 2008, when I was 13. His family came to look for us to help bury him. We had to go. He was never a human being when he was alive. He was never a father. So I was like 'whatever, let's just go and bury him,'" Ntando added.
Shortly after her father's death, Ntando and her siblings were helped by her father's relatives, who wanted to make amends for the situation. It was then that Ntando was taken in by a family member who put her through high school.