The image of a 22-year-old killer boyfriend, Wiston Fonono Mmese posing for the camera with two knives in both hands is in total contrast with his family’s description of him.
Devastated, shocked and embarrassed by their son’s unexpected diabolical deed, Mmese’s family described the Molepolole man who stabbed his 21-year- old longtime girlfriend, Kedumetse Monnaemang, with a knife on Monday morning as a humble young man whom they never believed would not harm a fly.
“He was a very helpful boy who was always readily available to run errands at home. He was the quite type,” his grandmother, Phetogano Mmese, explained during a family interview this week.
The grandmother said she was still trying to come to terms with the tragic and shocking incident, which took place at the girlfriend’s parents’ house at Bokaa ward in Molepolole and the subsequent suicide of her grandson.
“I knew that girl. She used to come here (to our home) and I liked her a lot. She was equally well behaved and my grandson loved her,” she said gazing at the 2018 calender, which carries images of the lovebirds.
Recalling the good days, Phetogana explained that Fonono used to rear chicken at home, so the young lovers used to spent days together looking after the chicken.
“They would then slaughter and sell chicken together. When they stopped the chicken business, they bought a tent and started selling fresh chips by the roadside,” she said.
However the old woman said she advised Fonono to avoid bringing the girl home because it was not cultural to do so.
Since then she said, Kedumetse stopped visiting Fonono at home and instead Fonono frequented her parents’ home.
“Even the day before the incident, he took his mother’s car and drove me to the lands. He was to return the car earlier that same day since his mother wanted to use it to go to church. Nonetheless he drove to Mmanoko to play Sunday soccer before returning the car,” stated the devastated granny.
Fonono’s uncle Gulala Mmese, 49, said they spent the last day at Mmanoko village, outside Molepolole where they played and won two games for their team, Stonebreakers.
“Fonono was a team captain because he was a well behaved and a disciplined player. I am the team coach so I can attest to that,” Gulala added.
What he knows about the fateful day is that that Sunday, Fonono travelled to Mmanoko with Kedumetse’s cousin, who was also a team mate.
After the game they drove back to Kedumetse’s place where he washed the car before returning it to his mother.
“It was already late when he returned the car, but we were told that Fonono had an argument with Kedumetse earlier. Allegedly he told her that they would sort out the issue once he returned, so he took the car home and went back. We woke up the next day to the shocking news that he was hanging on a tree nearby and that he had killed Kedumetse,” Gulala explained.
Both Kedumetse and Fonono will be laid to rest this coming weekend.
Kedumetse’s family representative, Mpai Monnaemang, equally expressed the shock of losing a young woman who was full of life.
However he said he could not really repeat what he had already discussed in the media where hedecsribed Kedumetse as a sweet and kind young woman who only fell victim to gender based violence.
The United Nations office in Botswana has stated that gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls cannot be achieved without the involvement of men and boys.
Their contention was that, negative attitudes that promote gender inequality could be unlearned thereby contributing to healthier relationships.
They were responding to escalating statistics of violent crimes against women and girls which according to the UN indicates that 67 per cent of women in Botswana have already experienced some form of abuse, a number which is said to be over double the global average.