Monday, July 19, 2010
Killer dad slays entire family
19 July 2010, 07:09
By Zelda Venter
Five people, including three children, burnt to death after their father torched their home in Temba near Hammanskraal following an argument with his wife.
Osia Masilo Lotsete, 37, locked himself, his wife Refilwe, 35, and their three children - Neo, 14, Thutlegang, 10 and Orapeleng, 4 - in their home at midnight on Saturday, before switching on a gas cylinder. He then lit a match and set them all alight.
All five burnt to death inside the locked house.
The police confirmed the incident. Warrant Officer Sarah Lesabane said when the police arrived on the scene shortly after midnight, the emergency services were already there.
After the fire was extinguished the bodies of the five people were found inside.
It was the second time in a week that Osia Lotsete had apparently tried to kill himself, his wife and children, said family member Salang Motsepe.
Although the couple had a stormy relationship from the start, it intensified two weeks ago.
Last Tuesday he tried to burn down the house with his family inside. But, before he could set the house alight, Neo managed to open the door to the garage and they escaped.
Motsepe said the wife and children called the neighbours for help.
Two days later, on Thursday, the couple once again fought terribly. This time it was about money the husband had withdrawn from his wife's bank account.
"They fought from inside the house on to the street," Motsepe said.
The family members had had enough and decided to intervene.
Both sides of the family were due to meet yesterday to try to help sort out the problems.
"It is a terrible tragedy and one the family are battling to come to terms with. Instead of trying to make peace between them, we were met with the news that the whole family had died," a heartbroken Motsepe said.
All the family know is that the couple fought again on Saturday night. Then Osia locked his family inside. They apparently fought for some time when he suddenly opened the gas and struck a match.
The house burnt to the ground.
It is believed that Lotsete, a welder, barred the windows so that his family could not escape.
When the Pretoria News visited the house last night, neighbours did not want to say much about what happened, apart from shaking their heads and saying that it was a tragedy.
"Things are very touchy at this stage. It all came as a great shock to us because we were on our way to meet the couple to try to resolve their differences.
"This leaves us in pain. I hope this sends out a message to others that they must talk and try to find solutions to their problems. They must seek professional help from organisations or from social workers.
"People who are embroiled in domestic violence should learn from this tragedy," Motsepe said.
It is expected that the funeral will be this weekend at Makapanstad, near Hammanskraal.
This article was originally published on page 1 of The Pretoria News on July 19, 2010
Comments by Sonny
Why are fathers becoming so violent?
Is there any unknown reason for this domestic violence?