Uyinene’s mother speaks to Demi-Leigh about the pain after her daughter’s death

'The days are not the same ...”

22 May 2020 - 06:00 By Kyle Zeeman
Nineteen-year-old UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana died last year.
Nineteen-year-old UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana died last year.
Image: Facebook/Zuki Lamani

Uyinene Mrwetyana’s mother had an emotionally-charged conversation with former Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Tebow, admitting that days were “not the same” since the 19-year-old University of Cape Town (UCT) student’s murder last year.

Uyinene was raped and murdered in August last year, sparking outrage, protests and the social media campaign #AmINext, demanding that the government address gender-based violence (GBV).

We follow Uyinene Mrwetyana's final steps on August 24 2019 when she was brutally murdered in a Cape Town post office and then disposed of in a hole next to a railway track.

Demi-Leigh hosted a chat with Noma Mrwetyana on Instagram Live on Wednesday evening where the pair spoke about Uyinene’s legacy and the fight against gender-based violence.

Opening up about life after her daughter’s death, Noma said it was difficult but she was grateful for the support she got from people across the nation.

“Days are not the same but we have found a lift,” she said, adding that she would not let the event define her daughter or her memory of her.

After Uyinene’s death, Noma started a foundation to empower women to stand against gender-based violence and keep her daughter’s legacy alive.

“I thought surely something needs to be done. It can’t be that all of this was in vain. I must try find purpose and repurpose in a way so that other parents don’t go through what I went through.”

She said that Uyinene was bigger than gender-based violence.

“Uyinene is bigger than the events (of her death), she is bigger than gender-based violence. She was a leader ... she was confident and knew who she was.”

Demi-Leigh applauded Noma’s courage and thanked her for her work in stopping femicide in the country.

“Thank you Mama Noma for your courage to fight GBV and for letting your beautiful daughter’s legacy live on through the work of the Uyinene Foundation,” she wrote.