Former ANC MP David Dlali found shot dead in bakkie near his farm

2012-06-12 00:00

A FORMER ANC MP turned special ministerial adviser was found shot dead in the back of his bakkie on his farm near Matatiele yesterday morning.

David Dlali’s vehicle was parked behind bushes on his property, said a neighbour who discovered the popular ex-politician’s body.

Dlali (51) was appointed special adviser to Lulu Xingwana, Minister of Women, Youth, Children and People with Disabilities, after the 2009 election.

His neighbours were alerted after farm workers reported him missing at 6 am yesterday. Forty minutes later they found his body.

“My wife and I went searching for him,” said one of his neighbours, who did not want to be named.

“This area is a mountainous and it was a bit of a distance, so we drove down. We found him in his bakkie at about 6.40 am.

“The bakkie had been hidden behind some bushes there.”

The neighbour suspected Dlali was killed on Sunday evening.

“The police are still combing the area and they have a heavy presence here,” he told The Witness.

He described Dlali as a good neighbour and friend. “He was a very good, hardworking man who was dedicated,” he said. “He took farming seriously and he was busy renovating his house on the farm, preparing for when he retires as he planned to live here full-time.”

Dlali farmed cattle and sheep and spent weekends and holidays on his farm.

“I do not know whether he was married or not,” the neighbour added. “All I know is that he has a son in the Western Cape and another one who works for him here.”

He described Dlali’s death as a great loss. “We needed men like him in this area and now his contribution will be missed.”

Eastern Cape police spokesperson Brigadier Miranda Mills said a murder case had been opened.

Dlali, who served on several committees as an MP, including the National Assembly’s land committee, once caused a stir by stating that all white farmers were guilty of evicting farm workers.

Xingwana, the ANC in Parliament and in the Eastern Cape yesterday expressed shock.

Meanwhile, an elderly couple from Besters, near Ladysmith, are recovering in hospital after they were attacked and robbed by four men on Saturday. The police said the attackers took three firearms. No arrests have been made.

Koos Marais of the KwaZulu Agricultural Union security desk urged the government to act to curb farm attacks.

• thamsanqam@witness.co.za

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