Connie Chiume has revealed that she battled with suicidal thoughts in 1987 after losing her daughter.
The actress took to the podium at Siyabonga Zubane’ s memorial service at the Joburg Theatre on Thursday.
Actor Siyabonga Zubane died on May 1. Opening with a gospel hymn, Connie said she was sad to grieve the life of a promising young talent.
“It’s difficult to stand here and talk about a young talent, creative, a child we were all still looking forward to seeing how far he’d go. We are crying for Siya, but what has happened has happened.”
The Gomora star got emotional, lamenting the mystery why many young lives were being lost in the entertainment industry.
“Who do we hand over the baton to when our children are dying like this? What is going on with our youth? We have a problem, not just in the arts, generally we have a problem, maybe especially in our industry.”
Connie appealed to the department of arts and culture to intervene because many lives in the entertainment industry were lost due to mental health issues.
“We cry about the department of culture and the department of health, please intervene. Can you please intervene together with broadcasters, even in the music industry, why are we losing our youth like this?
“Satan is taking advantage of the situations we find ourselves in. There’s a demonic spirit going around taking our children who are coming with better things for the future of our country. Something is going on in the spiritual world … We need to stand up. We stood up and fought apartheid and many other ills that make us fight, let this be one of them.”
Connie reflected on her battle with suicidal thoughts, speaking of the many times she considered taking her own life.
“My child died while I was feeding her. My own daughter died. I became suicidal. I couldn’t speak, even the people I stayed with at home didn’t know that I was suicidal. So when things like this happen I understand and I know.
“Every time that voice told me … every time that demonic spirit came, I would kneel and pray, I would take all the dangerous things and put them in suitcases far up in the cupboards so that when that thing comes, maybe by the time I finish praying that thing would have gone through prayer, God rescued me.”
The actress warned people to be aware of how they treat other people as they could easily “trigger something”.