The crime and violence must be stopped

As I write this letter I am troubled about the future of our nation.

About 35years ago my father visited a mosque in Chiappini Street in Bo-Kaap for evening prayers. On his way out, the Imam of the Mosque who was a family friend asked him for help. He wanted to lock the mosque but there was a youngster sitting in the mosque. He had been abandoned by his friends with whom he had travelled from Darus-Salaam in East Africa. The boys English was not good but it was obvious that he had no money or place to sleep. He did not speak much but clearly needed help.

My father brought the boy home and told my siblings and I that we should treat him as our new brother and we were required to look after him. The boy lived with us for 10 years. In that time my father taught him many skills which included general building trade such as tiling and carpentry.

The boy who became a man, excelled at painting and decorating. He was so skilled and talented that he was contracted by some of the most exclusive hotels and businesses in Cape Town.

He loved food too much and would visit me, enquiring before-hand, “what was for lunch”. Since he became rather chubby and loved joking around, he had a non-threatening exterior and behavior.

Sadly, On Wednesday, 11 Sept, my father informed me that “my adopted brother” was killed in Kraaifontein. Though he spoke English and Afrikaans and married a local, it was obvious that he was East African. We do not know what ensued. Was it crime or was his death inspired by xenophobia?

Rest in peace Omaree, you were my brother and my heart mourns you. You will be remembered.

Cllr Yagyah Adams

Cape Muslim Congress


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