In happier times: The late Ms Funanani Mbedzi Mundalamo and her husband. Photo supplied.

Choir leader shot twice during Easter service


The brutal killing of a popular choir leader during a church service at Makonde Shadani village on Saturday has sent shockwaves through the local community. The woman was allegedly shot twice by her estranged husband before he disappeared into the night.

The 45-year-old Ms Funanani Mbedzi Mundalamo was a well-known figure in the Khubvi area. She had her own business, Funi’s Hair Salon, but also spent her time at her local church where she served as a worship leader.

According to Limpopo Police Spokesperson Colonel Malesela Ledwaba, the incident happened at around 18:00. The church where she was attending the Easter sermon is situated next to the Mutale Bridge.

Based on the information that became available, Ms Mundalamo was in church when a man walked up to her, pulled out a gun, and shot her twice. In the chaos that ensued, the congregants fled, fearing for their lives. Ms Mundalamo’s wounds were fatal, and she died in the church.

“The suspect fled the scene in a silver-grey Toyota Corolla, following the abhorrent act. While the motive behind this appalling incident remains unclear, domestic violence cannot be ruled out,” said Col Ledwaba.

The incident was condemned by various groups advocating against gender-based violence in the Vhembe area. The Tshenuwani Farisani Foundation’s spokesperson, Mr Kenny Mathivha, said that such an incident happened just as the church celebrated the crucifixion of Christ and its meaning to the world was almost ironic. He added that they were told that the woman and her husband were in the process of getting a divorce and did not live together. They did, however, attend the same church, where the woman served as a worship leader.

“We strongly condemn any form of violence, and this one is no exception. Whatever differences a couple may have, a life is not worth taking,” said the foundation’s patron, Dr Tshenuwani Farisani. The Tshenuwani Farisani Foundation is providing spiritual and other support to the family and urges the communities of Khubvi, Makonde, Tshifudi, and Vondwe to rally around them.

Ms Mundalamo will be laid to rest at the Khubvi Cemetery on Sunday. She is survived by two children, two sisters, Lienth and Petunia Mbedzi, and a brother, Ntshengedzeni Trevor Mbedzi.

The suspect in the killing, 54-year-old teacher Mr Eric Mundalamo, was appeared in the Thohoyandou Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday morning. His case was postponed to 10 June this year for a formal bail application.


News - Date: 05 April 2024

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Victor Mukwevho

Victor Mukwevho Ne-vumbani joined the Mirror during it's inception in 1990. He joined the SABC newsroom in 1995, and was known by  listeners as "A u fhedzisela ari". He was a news editor for The Tembisan Newspaper from 2007 to 2015. He rejoined the Limpopo Mirror newspaper in June 2022 as a freelance journalist.

Email: [email protected]