Killed by family's religious beliefs
BY PHEPHISA KHOZA
NCANDWENI – A mother of three has succumbed to death after falling ill and being allegedly denied access to hospital for treatment by her family due to their religious beliefs.
The family is now divided and are pointing accusing fingers at one another after Busi Ndwandwe (30) passed on, on Monday afternoon.
A family member argued that Busi could still be alive today had she been taken to hospital much earlier. He said when she first fell ill, her parents, who never go to hospital themselves, said they would rather pray for her at home despite that she was in a critical condition.
"We couldn’t go against the wishes of her parents even Busi was very bad," said the relative who requested that his identity be withheld as the family was still to meet over the matter.
He said it took the intervention of Nkilongo Member of Parliament, Trusty Gina, to have Busi taken to hospital last week Friday but it was already late by then. She passed on at the Good Shepherd Hospital.
The Ndwandwe family has strong Christian beliefs even though they do not belong to any particular Christian denomination.
They believed God would heal their daughter through prayer.
She became ill in November last year in one of the companies in Matsapha.
When visited last week, four days before she passed on, Busi was found with her aged father and two sisters-in-law.
Her father, who identified himself as Babe Ndwandwe confirmed the family’s position regarding the matter.
He said as a family, they believed in prayer and Busi understood and embraced the family’s stance.
"We are Christians and we don’t believe in hospitals and clinics. We believe God heals people through prayer.
"My daughter will be healed through prayer; she doesn’t need to go to hospital," said Ndwandwe who had a Bible in his hands.
He said nobody in his home ever goes to hospital when ill.
Ndwandwe said he himself had never been to hospital since 1967 when he got saved.
"Busi is prayed for almost daily by family members and caoncerned residents who visit the homestead on a daily basis. Her face is swelling on the right side and she has a large wound on her right leg.
"She cannot talk.
"She spends all day either sleeping or just seated on a grass mat inside the house," he said.
Her father said she understood the family’s position and was ‘comfortable’ with it because she was also a Christian.
"Busi is old enough and capable of taking her own decisions. She can go to hospital if she so chooses. We won’t stand in her way but she knows that we are against it," he said.
Ndwandwe said it was a sin to go to hospital as God was the only one who had the power to heal people.
He quoted various verses from the Bible. He quoted John 17 verse 1-3, Jacob 5 verse 14-15, and John 17 verse 11 – 17.
Asked what illness her daughter was suffering from, Ndwandwe said he did not know and said he believed God’s will would happen to her.
He refused to have his photograph or that of his ill daughter taken. He was interviewed before Busi passed on. Almost everybody knows about it and the family’s stance, including young children.
The area’s Member of Parliament, Timothy Myeni has been made aware of the matter. He, however, refused to comment.
Additional reporting by Sisho Magagula.
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