A match made in hell

2010-11-07 08:58

Every Sunday afternoon dozens of lonely men and women call into a match-making show on Capricorn FM hoping to find love.

Presented by Clayson “TC” ­Monyela, the programme seduces the station’s more than 1.5 million listeners in Limpopo with a mix of popular music and the phone-in, match-making slot.

The callers offer a brief description of themselves and then ­provide a contact number.

But the station and its listeners were reeling this week when police arrested 35-year-old convicted rapist Kabelo Maake for the brutal murders of two women who had called into the show.

Maake was arrested on Sunday night and subsequently led the ­police to bush near Tzaneen where the bodies of the two women were found.

One of the women was a 25-year-old retail worker from Senwabarwana, about 100km northwest of Polokwane, Limpopo. The other victim, also aged 25, was from Lebowakgomo, 60km southeast of the city, although she worked in Johannesburg. Police have not yet released the identities of the women.

Maake is a convicted rapist who was released on parole last October after being sentenced to 17 years for rape. He appeared before the Polokwane Magistrates Court on Wednesday on two counts of murder and two of kidnapping.

Police have not ruled out ­additional charges of rape.

He was remanded and would ­appear again in January.

Maake had apparently picked up both women in Polokwane – the first victim during June and the second in September.

Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said: “We do not know what he did with them, but he did kill them and then dumped their bodies in shallow graves next to Tzaneen.”

Police say they have overwhelming evidence against Maake. These include cellphones and other ­personal items of the victims found in his possession.

He also allegedly answered the deceased’s phones and demanded money in exchange for their safe return when relatives called to find their ­whereabouts.

Ngoepe said they were also investigating whether Maake had not committed similar crimes elsewhere and whether he had not flouted his parole conditions.

Capricorn FM programme manager Shonisani “Ashifashabba” Muleya, confirmed Maake met the victims through the station’s show.

He said although the station had not been formally linked to the court case, police this week ­requested to use the station to highlight safety issues in the wake of the tragedy.

“We also condemn individuals who listen to the station with the intention to use our content for ­dubious intentions,” said Muleya.

“We are constantly reminding our listeners to consider security implications when responding to invitations they get through the station – our listeners as such need to be more vigilant when checking on the person contacted as we will never assist criminals to achieve their goals.”

Muleya appealed on the public to help combat crime “without ­denying good citizens the right to interact through radio”.

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