Mob justice suspected after two more killings
FOLLOWING three apparent mob justice attacks a week ago, two more people have been killed in three suspected vigilante incidents in the Veeplaas and Zwide areas.
Police suspect this is a continuation of last weekend’s spate of similar attacks that left two people dead and another injured.
This brings the total death tally linked to suspected mob justice attacks to four in the last week, with two men seriously injured.
The latest three incidents happened yesterday when the body of Masixole Gama, 29, was found lying next to the Zwide graveyard close to Ngxongxela Street.
“Police responded to a tip-off of a body lying near the bushes. He had sustained lacerations to his body and was visibly battered,” police spokesman Captain Andre Beetge said.
“It appears the deceased’s friend managed to escape and was taken to Dora Nginza Hospital.”
A tyre was found lying next to Gama’s body. “At this stage the evidence points to a mob justice incident. We are still trying to gather details.”
Beetge said while the motive remained unknown, it appeared the two had been attacked by a mob accusing them of committing crime in the area.
The body of Lubabalo Zenzile, 25, was found bordering the swamp area near the salt pans, about a kilometre from where Gama’s body had been found.
“He was also beaten and sustained stab wounds. At this stage the motive is unknown – however, we are looking into whether it is possibly mob-related,” Beetge added.
By late yesterday detectives were still profiling the Zenzile and Gama names to see if these were aliases or their real names.
At 1pm, a man claiming to be Loyolo Ndwayana was found beaten in Magxaki Street, Kwazakhele.
Beetge said Ndwayana, which is believed to be an alias, had been rescued after residents started to beat him. “He was taken to hospital with extensive injuries from being beaten.”
He said residents claimed Ndwayana had been involved in several burglaries in the area. All six attacks happened within the same area of Veeplaas.
Siphesihle “Tsoli” Kala, 20, and his brother, Anele, 23 – both of whom used several aliases – were killed hours apart last weekend by residents who believed they were responsible for robberies and burglaries in the area. Siphesihle was standing trial for rape and facing a case of burglary – for which he was out on bail – but Anele had no pending cases.
Phakamile Kwesaba, 33, who also uses a string of aliases, was admitted to hospital with third-degree burns to his body in another unrelated attack on Friday last week.
Kwesaba, who had previously been convicted of burglary in East London, has had nine criminal cases against him withdrawn over the past 10 years.
The attacks all took place within 3km of each other in the Veeplaas area between Friday and Sunday afternoon.
Yesterday, Kwazakhele station commander Brigadier Lindelwa Vellem said police had embarked on an outreach programme with community leaders in an attempt to prevent further mob justice attacks.
To date, no arrests have been made in any of the murders.