‘No bail for dogs’
A community voices its anger in the wake of Victor Molosi’s murder
The Greater Knysna community is still in the process of coming to terms with the murder – or assassination? – of Ward 8 councillor Victor Molosi, even more so after the court appearance of a prominent member of the community on a charge of conspiracy to commit murder this past Monday.
Knysna Taxi Forum (KTF) secretary Mandla Tyololo was arrested on Friday 3 August and another person of interest is being held for questioning in connection with the murder. Southern Cape police spokesperson Captain Malcolm
Pojie has said more arrests are imminent. KTF has distanced itself from the incident since its secretary briefly appeared in the Knysna Magistrate’s Court on 06 August.
At least 1 000 people marched from Concordia and gathered outside the court building, calling for no bail to be granted to Tyololo. Participants told KPH journalists that police used teargas on the crowd during the march to court.
Waxa in community’s firing line
On the previous day, Sunday 5 August,
Nwabisa Pondoyi reported that chanting community members – on their way back from a meeting where they apparently were preparing for the court appearance the next day – marched towards councillor Velile Waxa’s house, but were dispersed before reaching it.
Asked why some of the posters wielded by marchers carried his name, Waxa told KPH, “I don’t know why I would even be involved in the murder, I am definitely not involved. I believe people want someone to blame and this could just be politicking. The police should be left to do their work.”. Since the protest at the court, Waxa’s home has been under police surveillance. Despite widespread rumours on social media that Waxa was detained by police in George, community members where he lives have confirmed that he was seen at his workplace in Knysna at least up until 19:00 on Tuesday 7 August.
Among the other signs carried by protesters were several calling for no bail for Tyololo. “To hell with killers” said one, while others read “No bail for dogs” and “No bail for killers”. A public order policing unit was on scene throughout the morning, barring any protester from entering the premises.
Magistrate Zukiswa Hans postponed the matter to 15 August for a formal bail application and added that a witness in the case is currently under witness protection. Tyololo remains in custody. During proceedings it came to light that he had previously been charged with assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and the State opposed bail for fear that he might interfere with the case.
Taxi forum distances itself from Tyololo
Speaking on behalf of KTF, Xolani Tsese (secretary of Ncedo Taxi Association) said the forum is going to let justice run its course, and added that the forum is yet to meet with its members to discuss a way forward.
“We had nothing to do with the incident. We are constantly working with the law and are not allowed to work with criminals, so in light of the allegations (against Tyololo) we think it is best to distance ourselves from him. We are vehemently against criminal activities of any kind,” Tsese said, and emphasised that they are behind the community who marched to the local courts on Monday.
“We provided transport for the residents to town (today) and assisted with transport during the late councillor’s memorial service last week to show our support to the family and the community,” Tsese added.
Molosi was, according to the police, shot by a single gunman on 23 July at about 22:00 near his home in Concordia, Knysna on his way home from a school governing body meeting at Concordia High School. Residents nearby have reported that it was more likely between 20:30 and 21:00.
Molosi sustained a wound to the head and was declared dead on arrival at the hospital.
At the time of going to print on Wednesday 8 August Capt Pojie said that apart from Tyololo no further arrests had been made in connection with the case.
Police, protesters and potential pandemonium.
Protesters at Mandla Tyololo’s court appearance.