Meghan Markle Pays Respects to South African Murder Victim Uyinene Mretyana During Secret Outing

The 19-year-old's death sparked outrage across the continent

By Cydney Contreras Sep 27, 2019 11:37 PMTags
Meghan Markle, South Africa TourPool/Samir Hussein/WireImage

Meghan Markle is paying her respects to the teen who was brutally murdered in a South African post office.

Meghan secretly went to the scene where Uyinene Mrwetyana died, in order to pay tribute to the young woman.

In August, teenager Uyinene Mrwetyana went missing after going to a local post office to pick up a package. According to the Times Live, the University Cape Town student initially went to the office to pick up a package but was told to come back later. Little did she know that when she returned in the evening, an unnamed post office worker would lock her in and brutally rape and murder her.

The suspect later confessed to the crimes to police and is now facing charges of rape, murder and defeating the ends of justice. 

Authorities found a body but had not yet identified the remains as of the Sept. 2 news report. 

Meghan Markle Once Again Breaks Royal Tradition

The story of the girl's murder made headlines across Africa, which likely motivated the new mom to express her condolences. According to The Sun reporter Emily Andrews, Meghan wrote on a ribbon at the memorial, "We stand together in this situation—Harry and Meghan September 26, 2019."

"The Duchess of Sussex has tied a ribbon at the site where 19-year-old Cape Town student Uyinene Mrwetyana was murdered last month, to pay her respects and to show solidarity with those who have taken a stand against gender based violence and femicide," read a post on Meghan and Harry's Instagram page. "Over the last month in Capetown, protests erupted through the streets in outrage over GBV in South Africa. The Duke and Duchess had been following what had happened from afar and were both eager to learn more when they arrived in South Africa. The Duchess spoke to the mother of Uyinene this week to relay their condolences."

"Visiting the site of this tragic death and being able to recognise Uyinene, and all women and girls effected by GBV (specifically in South Africa, but also throughout the world) was personally important to The Duchess," the post continued. "Uyinene's death has mobilised people across South Africa in the fight against gender based violence, and is seen as a critical point in the future of women's rights in South Africa. The Duchess has taken private visits and meetings over the last two days to deepen her understanding of the current situation and continue to advocate for the rights of women and girls."

Unlike her appearances at the Mothers2Mothers organization and the Cape Town beach, the royal kept her visit under the radar. No cameras or members of the press were made aware of Meghan's trip, which has drawn applause from fans and critics alike. 

During one tour event, the Duchess of Sussex told the women in the audience, "May I just say that while I am here with my husband as a member of the royal family, I want you to know that for me I am here with you as a mother, as a wife, as a woman, as a woman of color and as your sister. I am here with you and I am here for you and I thank you so much for showing my husband and I the spirit of Ubuntu and I look forward to our time over the next few days together."

On Monday, Prince Harry will meet with the president of Angola before attending a briefing on the Born Free to Shine project.