Atteridgeville sisters barred from drinking alcohol and frequenting taverns

A local tavern.Picture: Phill Magakoe

A local tavern.Picture: Phill Magakoe

Published Oct 6, 2023


No drinking alcohol and no frequenting taverns or clubs or places where alcohol and drugs are sold were some of the strict conditions given to the two Machaka sisters whose five children died in a shack fire in August.

Mother of three of the deceased children Zanele Machaka, 37, and grandmother to two of the children Lindiwe Machaka, 39, appeared briefly in the Atteridgeville Magistrate’s Court yesterday to hear whether they would be released.

The sisters face five counts of culpable homicide and child neglect and were released under correctional supervision on Thursday after the court had granted them bail of R5 000 each during their previous appearance.

However, due to the sisters being unable to raise the money, an inquiry was instituted to determine if they were suitable candidates for a supervisory release.

The charges came after it was alleged that on August 27 the sisters locked the five children in their shack and went to a nearby tavern. The shack caught fire and the children died.

During court, State prosecutor Solani Baloyi told the court that the post-mortem report and DNA results of the five children were still outstanding.

In granting their release, Magistrate Allan Cowan told them their correctional supervision conditions included they were not allowed to use drugs or alcohol and should not visit any taverns, bars, and clubs where alcohol or drugs were sold.

The sisters, who allegedly lived with relatives in Mpumalanga, were also instructed to report to community services in the area.

As a result of the outstanding reports, the matter has been postponed to November 16 for further investigation.

Speaking outside court following the postponement, grandmother Johanna Masongwana, whose son Johannes is the father of three of the children, was exasperated and emotional at the delays with the release of the bodies of the children.

Masongwana said she had left her own home to come and ensure that the children were given a funeral but now it seemed that their bodies would lie in the mortuary until next year because of all these delays.

Related Topics:

2023alcohol ban