Nellie Tembe’s death – here are facts you need to know

Investigations into the death of AKA’s fiancée Anele “Nelli” Tembe are continuing as details around her death come to light.

Police were on Sunday morning investigating the death of 22-year-old Nellie Tembe, the fiancée of well-known musician AKA, at the five-star Pepperclub Hotel in central Cape Town.

Nelli died on Sunday at the Pepper Club Hotel in Cape Town after she apparently fell from the 10th floor of the hotel.

Here is what you need to know:

What happened

On Sunday morning the country woke up to the news of Nelli’s death after images of police blocking the road at the hotel circulated on social media.

Hours before the death, the couple, seen on AKA’s Insta Stories, were shopping at the Maxhosa store at the V & A Waterfront  before having lunch with friends. They were then seen at Ayeyep Lifestyle club, where the rapper was performing.

Witnesses at the scene described to TshisaLIVE how they heard a scream, followed by a “loud doef” sound and then by a man shouting.

Netcare 911 spokesperson Shawn Herbst said Nelli died on the scene.

“When paramedics arrived on the scene, she had sustained polytraumatic injuries,” said Herbst.

“She was in a critical condition and they started a full life-support resuscitation. Unfortunately, her injuries were too severe and she was declared deceased.”

What could be the reason behind her demise?


Depression is real and a lot of people are going through so much behind the scenes. It always seems cool and beautiful on the surface but beneath the smiles and makeups lie a dark zone of hopelessness. Watching their Instagram stories seem pleasing and adorable as they look too cute together.

A lot of people have attributed her death to mental health, as many opinied that she has been going through depression for a while now.

To recall, in 22nd December 2020, she was seen threatening to jump off from the rooftop but was rescued by the police.

Police investigation

According to the hotel’s general manager Efi Ella, the hotel received a call at 7.30am about an “incident” involving a 22-year-old female.

“The case is under investigation. It’s a young woman, age 22 and at this stage police are  investigating. We will tell you once we have more information,” said Ella.

Western Cape police spokesperson Capt FC van Wyk confirmed crime scene experts were looking for clues at the hotel.

“Cape Town Central police are investigating an inquest case after an incident at a hotel this morning at about 7.45am on the corners of Loop and Bloem streets in the CBD, where the body of a 22-year-old woman was found deceased,” Van Wyk said.

Families ask for privacy and time to heal

AKA and Nelli’s families released a statement a joint statement and asked to be given privacy and time to heal.

“It is with the deepest regret that we, the Tembe and Forbes families, confirm the untimely passing of our beloved fiancée, daughter, sister, and daughter-in-law, Anele Tembe,” read the statement.

“We are still in shock and are dealing with our emotions as she was an exceptional and gifted young woman with so much life ahead of her. She had a sweet nature and was always nurturing to those around her. Her fiancé, Kiernan Forbes, is currently inconsolable and surrounded by family and closest friends. At this hour of our grief, we humbly request that our families be given privacy and time to heal.”

Condolence messages

On social media, condolence messages poured in under the hashtag #RIPNelli.

Here is a snapshot of what some had to say

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