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Furious mourner says Vyleen White’s vigil was marred by Africans loudly playing soccer

Vyleen White Vigil Ipswich Redbank Plains African

An attendee at a twilight vigil held for grandmother Vyleen White after her alleged stabbing murder by a Sudanese teenager in Redbank Plains has revealed the event was disturbed by a group of Africans loudly playing soccer nearby.

The local man on Friday gave a scathing account of his experience at the February 4 vigil, which was held after Ms White, 70, was allegedly killed in front of her traumatised six-year-old granddaughter while stealing her car at a shopping centre in Ipswich, west of Brisbane, the evening before.

He said Mayor Teresa Harding “spoke in empty platitudes and offered absolutely no solutions or leadership. Her manner was weak and it was plainly obvious the devastated community weren’t impressed”.

“One speaker mentioned how he has lived in Redbank Plains his entire life. He recounted that when he was a child he could walk to the shops to buy bread and milk without fear, and now things are very different.

“He asked what has changed. When he said this, everyone glanced side to side exchanging awkward looks. They know exactly what has changed but weren’t prepared to say it.

“About 90% of the attendees were White. Not a single African was there.”

Vyleen White vigil Redbank Plains
Africans playing soccer during Vyleen White’s vigil (supplied)

The man also shared a photo showing a group of Africans playing soccer during the vigil at the Westminster Warriors Soccer Club, and what appears to be the same group can be seen in pictures posted on social media by Mayor Harding.

“While the event was going on a group of blacks were playing a soccer game on the same field. Loudly hollering like a pack of baboons,” he said.

“They didn’t pause their game during the proceedings”.

He said he was not sure if the group couldn’t recognise what was clearly a sombre gathering or if they were “simply too rude to care”.

Mayor Harding wrote about the vigil: “Thank you to our wonderful community for coming together during such tragic circumstances.”

Redbank Plains Vyleen White vigil Africans
The loud soccer players can be seen in this photo shared by Mayor Harding (Facebook)

Ipswich council candidate Josh Addison organised and spoke at the event, and later vowed that Ms White’s death would “not be in vain”.

“She was a beloved grandmother, a loving wife and an adored mother – she loved and contributed to her community and Vyleen was an incredible woman of God and she was selfless, we will not let that memory fade,” he said on Facebook.

“This tragedy has taken the life of a beautiful woman with a beautiful soul from our community, it’s not the first but we need to make sure it is the last.”

A 16-year-old who came to Australia as a refugee from Sudan as a baby has been charged with murder, and two other 16-year-old males and a 15-year-old, also all of African descent, were charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle.

Ms White’s granddaughter Samantha created a petition after the tragedy, saying the alleged murder “has led me to realise the urgency of addressing gang-related and racially motivated violence in our community”, and calling for a “Vyleen’s Law”.

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