Richmond municipal manager gunned down

2017-03-06 13:44

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Durban - A special task team has been established to investigate the murder of Richmond municipal manager Sibusiso Sithole, who was shot and killed on Monday morning, KwaZulu-Natal's community safety MEC said.

KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Thulani Zwane said that around 08:45, a man believed to be in his 40s was shot by two unknown suspect on Victoria Road in Richmond.

Zwane said the suspects had fled the scene in a getaway vehicle and that the motive for the killing was unknown at this stage.

Community Safety MEC Mxolisi Kaunda's spokesperson Kwanele Ncalane said the MEC was concerned that Richmond was slowly regaining the reputation it had in the late 1990s as the killing fields of KwaZulu-Natal, following the recent murder of four family members.

"He has asked the police to assemble a team that will focus on this case, with a view of speeding up the investigation and making a breakthrough soon," Ncalane said.

Name confusion

Democratic Alliance provincial leader Zwakele Mncwango said there were allegations that Sithole had been trying to root out corruption in the municipality.

"We send our condolences to his family," he said.

The National Freedom Party's Sabelo Sigudu said: "This is no longer a political matter or about tender benefits, it is influenced by evil acts. The continuous killings in this province of KwaZulu-Natal pose a serious concern."

Sigudu suggested that Premier Willies Mchunu reconsider "cadre deployment".

"In most cases it is comrades against comrades who are killing each other, we strongly suggest that people be appointed as per merits," Sigudu said.  

The party urged Richmond residents to remain calm and not take the law into their own hands.

Meanwhile, there has been confusion over the identity of the dead man as the former municipal manager of eThekwini is also named Sibusiso Sithole.

The former municipal manager confirmed that he was indeed still alive.

He wrote on his Facebook page: "The news about the killing of my namesake Sbu Sithole, the municipal manager of Richmond municipality has sent shock waves through the country.

"I'm devastated by this tragic loss of such decent and dedicated local government practitioner. What saddens me most is that I'm getting calls [from] concerned colleagues who thought it's me. This is to assure all concerned that I'm still alive. Love Nkunzi."

Read more on:    durban  |  crime

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