Body found: man’s long wait for po­lice

Daily News - - NEWS - LA­TOYA NEW­MAN

AS THE Inanda com­mu­nity grap­ples with the mystery be­hind the dis­cov­ery of the body of an in­fant on a piece of land in the Bham­bayi area, the plot’s owner was up­set over al­leged shoddy po­lice work.

He said he and his work­ers had to keep watch over the body overnight while they waited for po­lice to re­spond.

Sazi Shandu said he re­cently bought the land and was build­ing a home on it.

Work­ers were dig­ging a sec­tion for an out­side toi­let and wash area when they found the body at about 3.30pm on Tues­day.

“It looked like a baby. The bones were very small,” said Shandu.

“We re­ported it to the po­lice. They passed me from one of­fi­cer to the next, one shift to the next. By 8pm of­fi­cers ar­rived but they re­fused to do any­thing. In fact, they said we must dig fur­ther as they could not see clearly. Then they left and said some­one would come the next day.

“I even went to the po­lice sta­tion to get some­one to come to my place. I had to deal with three shifts of po­lice, ex­plain­ing things each time to dif­fer­ent of­fi­cers,” he said.

One of the work­ers at the build­ing site pho­tographed po­lice stand­ing over the makeshift grave. Shandu said dif­fer­ent po­lice of­fi­cers re­turned – a day later.

When the Daily News ar­rived there yes­ter­day, the po­lice had just left with the body. How­ever, a blan­ket with Mickey Mouse on it and a blue woollen bon­net were left be­hind.

The for­mer owner of the land, Sandile Mtolo, was at the site. He said the land had been in his fam­ily for more than 10 years, but no­body had lived there.

“Over the years dif­fer­ent squat­ters came. Some set up wooden houses. But the oc­cu­pants changed from time to time. I also live in Inanda. On Tues­day, Mr Shandu called me about the baby’s body. I came over im­me­di­ately. But I don’t know whose baby this could be. The land was mainly used by squat­ters,” he said.

SAPS Colonel Them­beka Mb­hele said: “An in­quest docket has been opened by Inanda SAPS af­ter a hu­man skele­ton was re­cov­ered this morn­ing at Bham­bayi, Inanda.

“wThe cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing the in­ci­dent are be­ing in­ves­ti­gated.”


When asked about the al­le­ga­tions re­gard­ing shoddy po­lice work, she said: “The al­le­ga­tions will be in­ves­ti­gated.”

Ward 57 coun­cil­lor Knowl­edge Phohlo was on his way to the site when the Daily News con­tacted him.

“We do have some chal­lenges where some­times when you re­port a mat­ter to po­lice they may ar­rive late. But there are not many of these com­plaints,” he said.

“I must be hon­est, the Inanda po­lice are gen­er­ally help­ful. And it must also be seen in con­text: Inanda is a huge area to po­lice. That said I am go­ing to speak to the prop­erty owner to find out more about what hap­pened.”

One of the work­ers at the build­ing site took this photo of po­lice of­fi­cers stand­ing over the makeshift grave on Tues­day night. The in­ci­dent was al­legedly re­ported at 3pm. Po­lice al­legedly told the prop­erty owner to dig fur­ther be­cause they needed to be...

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