“He threatened to kill me countless times” – Mother
A troubled young man’s fiery temper has left his 79-year-old mother homeless after he deliberately set fire to her house, causing thousands of Pulas worth of damage.
Moshupa resident Gaolebale Sebetlela watched in helpless horror last Friday, as flames gutted the ‘dream house’ she had worked so hard to achieve, destroying everything inside.
The elderly woman’s son, 31-year-old Tefo Sebetlela has since been arrested on suspicion of arson and sent to Sbrana Hospital for a mental check up.
According to Gaolebale, the medical results show that her son is ‘normal’ but suffering from depression.
Highlighting Tefo’s unstable recent behaviour, Gaolebale claimed her son was extremely frustrated and had repeatedly threatened to kill her.
Talking exclusively to The Voice as she surveyed the burnt rubble of her ruined house, Gaolebale said, “He was recently dismissed from work for harassing his girlfriend where they worked together as security officers.
“All I know is that he burnt the house and all the property burnt to ashes. I suspect he doused the house with petrol as everything burnt,” she said, adding that she finally finished furnishing the house in 2015 after years of saving up.
Gaolebale, who is currently staying with her sister, revealed that this was not the first time her son had tried to torch her house.
“He recently burnt papers inside the house passage but we managed to put out the fire before it could spread throughout the house,” she said, looking on in dismay at the charred remains of what used to be her couch.
Despite her misfortune, Gaolebale stressed that it could have been a lot worse had she been inside the house when the fire started.
“I saw smoke coming from the airbrick of the bedroom and screamed for help,” she narrated, before being overcome by a coughing fit caused by the choking smoke that clogs the ash-filled rooms of her once proud home.
An eyewitness to the fire, 70-year-old Motswaki Koontse described the suspect as a quiet, polite person, who always greeted her whenever they passed.
“I never thought he would burn my friend’s house,” she added quietly.
Speaking to The Voice, Station Commander for Moshupa Police, Oteng Ngada confirmed that investigations into the incident were ongoing.
“We have arrested the suspect. He is still seeking medical attention, afterwards he will appear before court,” said Ngada.