Pupil dies in ‘drug attack’

2009-03-30 00:00

A 17-year-old pupil died in his sister’s arms after he was stabbed to death in front of his schoolmates at Amakholwa High School in the Sinathing area of Edendale yesterday.

Nhlanhla Buthelezi, a grade nine pupil, was attacked by two assailants who are believed to be brothers. Armed with daggers, the two brothers — one of them allegedly a grade 11 pupil at the school and the other an ex-pupil- stabbed him three times.

The killing has been linked to drug dealing: it is believed Nhlanhla was killed to silence him after a drug dealer allegedly gave him a message to give to the brothers. However, the police could not confirm the allegations. SAPS spokeswoman Inspector Joey Jeevan said the motive for the killing is being investigated.

Sources at the school told The Witness that the drug dealer from outside the school had been asking about one of the brothers, the grade 11 pupil who has not been at school for three weeks.

“This man [the alleged drug dealer] had asked Nhlanhla to tell him if he saw the one brother.

He told Nhlanhla that the brother owed him R500 for drugs he had given him to sell at school.”

The source said the alleged drug dealer said he would come to collect his money personally.

During break time, at about 11 am, while pupils were out of their classrooms on the verandas, the two intruders entered through a hole in the school fence.

In a brazen manner, the two boys, who are well known at the school, strode across the schoolyard towards the veranda on the first floor where Nhlanhla was standing. “They confronted him, brandishing their daggers. He tried to run away,” said a source at the school.

“One of them pushed him down the stairs and the other followed and stabbed him quickly before they both ran away.”

The source said efforts by pupils to help Nhlanhla walk to the staff room were in vain, as he collapsed before he reached the door. “Pupils screamed and teachers came out.”

Nhlanhla’s foster mother, Thoko Buthelezi, arrived at the school accompanied by neighbours and relatives. Nhlanhla’s body, which was covered in blood, was still in the corridor as police were still collecting evidence.

“I am shocked, my son was not a violent person. I don’t know why he was killed,” said Buthelezi.

The police are expected to make an early arrest in the case.

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