Game ranger killed in 'friendly fire'

2011-09-12 23:00

kalahari.com

Pietermaritzburg - A game ranger was accidentally shot dead by colleagues whilst they were tracking suspected rhino poachers in Mfolozi Game Reserve at the weekend.

The ranger was identified as Zephania Mbuso Myeni, 39.

He'd been working for Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife (EKZNW) 18 years.

The organisation said Myeni had been a “very influential front man on combating poaching” in its reserves.

EKZNW said the accident happened after field rangers from the Madlozi camp picked up two human tracks leading in a southerly direction into the wilderness area on Saturday evening.

After reporting to the command structure, four field rangers were despatched, including Myeni, who held the rank of corporal in the anti-poaching unit.

En route to the scene where poachers allegedly fired three shots at about 18:30, the team divided themselves into two groups in order to reach the site as soon as possible and cover a larger area.

The two teams subsequently intercepted one another in the darkness.

Hearing nearby human activity, the leading group took cover waiting to see whether the sounds were poachers or their colleagues.

Heart wrenching

“Waiting to hear a familiar sound … the staff sergeant heard a gun fire and a bullet flash through the undergrowth,” said EKZNW media spokesperson Maureen Zimu.

The staff sergeant shouted out identifying them as Ezemvelo rangers but the shooting continued and Myeni was hit and subsequently died.

EKZNW CEO Bandile Mkhize said it was heart wrenching that “committed and selfless field rangers” were responsible for mistakenly killing one of their own members.

He said the suspected poachers had escaped.

EKZNW will conduct an internal investigation into the incident and ensure that stricter measures are put in place to prevent an incident like this happening again.

EKZNW’s rhino security intervention co-ordinator Jabulani Ngubane paid tribute to Myeni as a “dedicated and committed” field ranger.

Ngubane said Myeni had been the recipient of numerous accolades and awards, including bravery awards and the Golden Lions Head which is awarded for the successful recovery of a loaded gun.

As a member of the anti-poaching unit, Myeni took part in numerous “dangerous” operations including combined security operations involving the police and Ezemvelo.
 

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  poaching  |  rhino poaching
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
28 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Fashion
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Monday Pinelands - 06:39 AM
    Road name: N2 Inbound
    ACCIDENT at the Jan Smuts Drive exit - DELAYS from Duinefontein Road
  • Monday Parow - 06:38 AM
    Road name: N1 Inbound
    DELAYS between Plattekloof Road and the N7 Highway Interchange
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Curve 9360

The BlackBerry Curve 9360 smartphone comes preloaded with Blackberry OS7...

From R1433.60

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There is a strong emphasis on relationships. Obsession, emotional disputes, retaliation or competitive actions are highlighted....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.