DURBAN – Schoolboy Miguel Michael Louw, 9, was cremated on Saturday. The funeral, a celebration of his life at St Anne’s Church near his Sydenham home, saw crowds of mourners, many wearing shirts with Miguel’s picture, to say goodbye.

They searched for the boy when he went missing from Rippon Road Primary School on July 18. Miguel is alleged to have been kidnapped by family friend, Mohammed Vahed Ebrahim.

His body was found on September 3, in a shallow grave metres away from Ebrahim’s home in Phoenix.

“You did not deserve this, what was done to you, and what you went through. I will always question that, my love,” Miguel’s mother, Raylene Louw, wrote in a tribute letter to her son.

Louw bowed her head before her child’s coffin, and sobbed into the palms of her hands.

Her eldest daughter, Mikayla, 13, held her, as they listened to children singing a hymn for protection.

Reverend Father Ndodana Tshuma said: “As adults and parents, we have neglected our responsibility.

“Miguel has become, and is that one person, who stands for thousands of children who are abused, victimised, and whose lives are shortened.

“Stand up for your community and your children.

“We will no longer have children singing about problems surrounding them.”

Miguel would have turned 10 in November. Ebrahim is expected to appear in court on Monday.

SUNDAY TRIBUNE