The Limpopo Department of Education is providing pupils and teachers with counselling following the shooting death of 11-year-old Gundo Mamatho. Mamatho was allegedly shot in the head by a fellow student in Maniini village near Thohoyandou about a week ago. Mamatho was rushed to Tshilidzini Hospital after the shooting but died a day later.
The boy was buried Friday in an emotional funeral attended by family, friends, teachers and pupils from the school.
Police have since arrested a friend of Mamatho who allegedly shot him as the two walked home together. Sill a minor, the suspect cannot be identified.
“The 10-year-old boy is currently being evaluated by social workers and psychologists in a place of safety in order to determine his state of mind,” said Limpopo police spokesperson Major Mashudu Malelo.
A 10-year-old girl* who witnessed the shooting says it continues to haunt her.
“I am now afraid to go to school or even walk on the street, as I keep on thinking about what I witnessed the day Gundo was shot,” she told OurHealth.
Maniini Primary School Principal Johannes Ligaraba said the incident has deeply affected students.
“Most of them are struggling to concentrate and they are still shocked by what has happened to Gundo,” he said. “Even the teachers at the school are still traumatised by the incident.”
“At the moment, we do not know how we will be able to go forward as the school after what has happened,” said Ligaraba who welcomed Department of Education counsellors.
Pupils at the primary did not attend classes following the shooting and have returned to school only this week. – Health-e News.
*Name withheld to protect the identity of the child
An edited version of this story was also published on the Independent Online