Earlier this week, the royal mom of one, who has remained in the area with son Archie, made a private visit to the Cape Town memorial of Uyinene Mrwetyana, the 19-year-old University of Cape Town student who was raped and murdered, allegedly by a post office worker.
She had been missing in late August and her death was confirmed in September.
“Having closely followed the tragic story, it was a personal gesture [Meghan] wanted to make,” her spokesperson confirms with PEOPLE.
Meghan visited the memorial at the Clareinch Post Office, where Mrwetyana died. The Duchess of Sussex paid tribute by leaving a handwritten message which read: “Harry & Meghan 26th September 2019.” In addition, she wrote, “We stand together in this situation,” in the native language of Xhosa.
Yellow ribbons have been left as tributes to #Uyinene Mrwetyana and Meghan left a moving message, written in her distinctive calligraphy, in local language Xhosa: “We stand together in this situation.— Emily Andrews (@byEmilyAndrews) September 27, 2019
“Harry & Meghan 26th September 2019.” pic.twitter.com/VH7u7rDQEE
On the day of her disappearance, Mrwetyana went to the post office to ask about a parcel but the electricity was out and was told to return later that day, said National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila, according to The South African.
When she did return, she was bludgeoned to death. Her body was found a week later in the nearby township of Khayelitsha, BBC reported.
At Mrwetyana’s Sept. 7 funeral in east London, Police Minister Bheki Cele recalled her final moments during the assault.
“With all the innocence in the world … she begins to realize that there is a problem here. This guy attacks this young woman, this young woman fights, she fought back heavily. She fights, and for some reason, she loses footing, and he rapes her,” Cele said, according to local news outlet News24.
Earlier this month, a 42-year-old suspect appeared in court, where prosecutors reported that he had confessed to raping and fatally beating Mrwetyana, then burning and dumping her body. A trial is scheduled for November.
Mrwetyana’s death triggered national outrage about the safety of women in South Africa as one in five women are assaulted by a partner, according to the BBC, which also stated that there are more than 40,000 cases of rape reported each year with most of the victims being female.