Robbers gun down Margate businessman

2013-04-08 13:22
(File, Nielen Bottomley, News24)

(File, Nielen Bottomley, News24)

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Durban - A prominent Margate businessman was shot and killed over the weekend on his return from an evening out with his wife and friends.

Two armed men apparently gained entry into the Uvongo home of Robin Bothma, 67, and waited for his return on Friday night.

When one of the intruders roughed up his wife Jill, Bothma reached for the panic button and one of the men shot him dead.

The Bothmas own businesses in the Margate area, including the popular Koko’s nightclub. They did not have money on the property during the incident and never kept money in their home.

R150 in safe

Bothma’s daughter, Haydee, told The Witness that there was only R150 in the safe at the time of the incident.

Haydee said the police were perturbed by the robbery as there was no sign of forced entry to the property and that only a cellphone was stolen.

“It is possible it was an inside job as they came thinking that my parents kept a lot of money in the house, which is not true. There was only R150 in the safe, and my father would have given it to them, but they started hurting my mother, which is when he decided to push the panic button and they shot him,” she said.

Bothma was shot in the head and he died instantly. The men fled the scene taking only a cellphone.

Bothma was born in Port Shepstone and he attended Margate school.

He returned to the South Coast after finishing the army and he started a job as a sewing machine mechanic. A few years later with three friends he opened the Marburg Manufacturers, a clothing factory on the South Coast.

Nightclub

Haydee said: “My father retired at the age of 55 and he bought two commercial properties in Margate, which he said would be for us kids to start our own businesses. He was a great father as he was always available to offer advice.

“When he bought Koko’s nightclub, people thought he was crazy but he loved that nightclub and he was so proud of it.”

Bothma was an animal lover and he was always donating money to the SPCA and raising money for Guide Dogs for the Blind. “Of course, the family is devastated at losing him and especially the way he died, but I think the whole community is sharing our loss,” she said.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Vincent Mdunge said the men demanded the safe keys and then shot Bothma in the head and fled.

“They took a cellphone. A murder docket is being investigated,” he said.

Bothma is survived by his wife Jill, children Dean, Wade, Haydee, Ryan and their families.

 
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