SWEAT & Sisonke says farewell to Zizipho Songca

Born 18/07/1992 Died 21/04/2021

On 16 February 2021 SWEAT received devastating news: Zizipho Songca, a 28-year-old single mother and Peer Educator at SWEAT, East London, had been rushed to hospital. We learnt that she has been brutally attacked inside her home and that she was fighting for her life. She fought very hard for two months, but on 21 April 2021 her family let us know that she had succumbed to her injuries. She died at her home in Libode in the Eastern Cape.

We extend our deepest condolences to her family, her colleagues and her friends.

The attack she suffered was indescribably violent. She remained in hospital for two months and passed on one week after her family took her home. She will be laid to rest in Libode on 1 May 2021.

All of us (colleagues and service users of SWEAT) was in shock when we learnt of her attack. The idea that someone could do that to her was simply unbelievable. She had become a statistic – another young woman attacked and killed in a country that has an escalating GBV and femicide rate. We also want to use this opportunity to urgently call on the government to act immediately to end the scourge of GBV facing our country. We demand that they fast track the implementation of the NSP of GBV with all its recommendations.

Instead of focusing on the way she had been taken, we have decided to focus on the short, but impactful life she had lived. Zizipho was kind; she was loving; she was graceful. She was a passionate young activist; dedicated to the human rights of others. We know her as a bubbly person and an incredible mother to her child. Her warmth was all encompassing.

We talk about the dreams she had; she wanted to continue studying and she was excited about her future and that of her child.

SWEAT will be holding a memorial service tomorrow to give an opportunity for those who knew and loved her to say our goodbyes to our colleague, friend and sister.

Date: 29 April 2021

Time: 10h00

Venue: SHE Residence, Currie Street, Quigney

For more info, please contact Phindi Ngwazi (SWEAT Manager, EL) phindilen@sweat.org.za