Moses Tembe, the father of AKA‘s fiancée has negated the reports that his daughter, Anele “Nelli” Tembe, committed suicide.
Moses made this known at Anele’s funeral which took place at the Durban International Conference Centre on Friday. The service was also live streamed on YouTube.
An emotionally-charged letter from Moses was read out by businessman Sandile Zungu, who said the letter was a reflection of a “heartbroken father”.
“I wasn’t there when Anele met her fate last Sunday. I neither seek to attack any person nor cast aspersions or suspicions nor stigmatise any mental condition. However, I can’t allow an unfortunate narrative to go unchallenged. A narrative that irks me no end as a father, which maliciously pervades some circles, is that Anele, my daughter, was chronically suicidal or had suicidal tendencies,” he wrote.
“All I can say is that until she turned 21, Anele wouldn’t consider taking her own life as a solution. Not a single member of my family, Anele’s family, would have ever associated Anele with suicide. Anele loved herself so much. She wanted to live more rather than less.”
Moses also spoke on dealing with what he termed a “scourge” of substance abuse “that bedevils our youth”: “Ladies and gentlemen, we need to understand the forces that put us in a situation that we find ourselves. Of course, we must as a matter of extreme priority, deal with the scourge that bedevils our youth. Alcohol which is overused, and drugs, especially if we envision our youth contributing meaningfully to our nation-building and economic development efforts. Fellow South Africans, we had better wake up and smell the coffee. We have a serious problem with substance abuse and add to that other social ills, and we are in a crisis.”
22-year-old Tembe died after falling from the 10th floor of the Pepperclub Hotel in Central Cape Town on Sunday, April 11, 2021. By afternoon, the family of Anele and AKA, confirmed the death in a joint statement which said that both families were still in “shock and dealing with our emotions”.