Call for calm as tod­dler’s mur­der is in­ves­ti­gated

Northern Eyethu - - NEWS • IZINDABA - Tam­lyn Jolly

A MISS­ING per­sons case turned into a mur­der in­quiry af­ter the mu­ti­lated body of a three-year-old Mtu­batuba child was found float­ing in a river.

The child was re­ported miss­ing on 10 De­cem­ber af­ter he failed to re­turn home with three older chil­dren he had al­legedly fol­lowed ear­lier in the day.

Ac­cord­ing to po­lice re­ports, the boy’s guardian, af­ter see­ing the child run­ning af­ter the older chil­dren, called to them to keep an eye on him.

When they re­turned later they said they had not heard her and had not seen him.

Af­ter three days, his mu­ti­lated body was found 3km from where he was last seen, float­ing in the Nyalazi River in the Nkun­dusi area.

While the cause of death is yet to be es­tab­lished, com­mu­nity mem­bers be­lieve he was mur­dered by a san­goma for muthi.

There is much un­rest among the com­mu­nity, whose mem­bers are call­ing for jus­tice and threat­en­ing to take the law into their own hands.

At a com­mu­nity gath­er­ing, Lt Col Mpun­gose of Mtuba- tuba Vis­i­ble Polic­ing urged the an­gry crowd to not act il­le­gally un­der their own as­sump­tions, but let the po­lice con­duct their own in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

‘Po­lice and the com­mu­nity must work to­gether, I strongly urge peo­ple to come to us should they have any in­for­ma­tion.’

Mpun­gose urged peo­ple to re­frain from at­tack­ing any­one they be­lieve to be a sus­pect, or burn­ing down any houses in their quest for jus­tice.

Echo­ing these sen­ti­ments, Nkun­dusi leader iN­duna Man­tengu said, ‘Al­though this is a huge loss to our com­mu­nity, let us not fight first, but find out the truth first.’

He urged the pub­lic to bring any in­for­ma­tion to ei­ther him­self or the SAPS.

‘Such a young child be­ing al­lowed to go some­where with­out the su­per­vi­sion of its par­ents is an of­fence in it­self,’ said Mtu­batuba Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Of­fi­cer, Cap­tain Jus­tice Hlabisa.

He urged par­ents to keep a close eye on their chil­dren.

One ar­rest was made, but the per­son was re­leased owing to in­suf­fi­cient ev­i­dence.

Mtu­batuba po­lice are still fol­low­ing leads.

SAPS

Nkun­dusi com­mu­nity mem­bers gath­ered for an ur­gent meet­ing about in­ves­ti­ga­tions into the death of a three-year-old boy

Nkun­dusi leader iN­duna Man­tengu and Mtu­batuba Vis­i­ble Polic­ing’s Lt Col Mpun­gose ad­dress the an­gry com­mu­nity

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