Nelli Tembe’s family share some of her dreams – ‘Her wish was to fall in love and get married’
Family members describe her as a big dreamer.
It’s never easy to say goodbye and that was clear when Anele Nelli Tembe’s family and friends gathered at the Durban ICC to pay their last respects to the 22-year-old.
Nelli was engaged to rapper Kiernan AKA Forbes. Family members spoke fondly about the kind, ambitious young woman who had a passion for traveling and food and dreamt of opening a Michelin star restaurant.
In a letter read by a family member, Anele’s father, Moses Tembe described his daughter as ambitious and a go-getter who always wanted to start her own family.
Read more l Nelli Tembe’s family, friends and AKA’s father pay tribute to her at prayer meeting
Before Nelli and AKA proceeded with marriage arrangements, he advised them to seek marriage counselling.
“Her wish was to fall in love and get married to the man who will be the father of her kids. She was clear that she wanted to get married. Before she turned 22, she fell in love with Kiernan. And lobola negotiations were had with the Forbes and Tembe family. I made a condition that Anele and Kiernan attend premarital counselling. I knew Kiernan loved her but they needed more than love,” Moses says.
“How is Anele no more?” Moses asked in shock before informing the mourners that his daughter had not been suicidal.
“I never seek to attack any person. I cannot allow an unfortunate narrative to go unchallenged.”
He went to say that Nelli did not die from suicide.
“Not a single member of my family, Anele’s family would have ever associated Anele with suicide. Anele loved herself so much she wanted to live more. Anele was never suicidal, neither did she commit suicide. This has put us in a situation,” he adds.
“As Anele’s father, I categorically state that Anele was neither suicidal nor did she commit suicide. We must as a matter of priority deal with the scourge that bedevils our youth. Alcohol which is overused and drugs. Fellow South Africans we better wake up and smell the coffee, we have a serious problem with substance abuse.”
Moses says his daughter’s passing has made him appreciate family. “Anele has made me realise the importance of family.”
Nelli died tragically after falling from the 10th floor of Pepperclub hotel in Cape Town on Sunday 11 April.
Grappling to come to terms with “losing the love of his life”, a close friend to rapper AKA says he is seeking comfort from loved ones and grief counselling.
“He is keeping a distance from his friends. I think it has not sunk in,” says a close friend who wishes to not be named.
“Kiernan is not okay and he will not be for a long time. Maybe after the funeral, it will all sink in,” says the friend.
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