Violence erupts in Inchanga

2016-08-22 11:11
SA police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

SA police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Durban – Police are on high alert in Inchanga with the outbreak of sporadic violence including two murders in the past 24 hours.

The area is a political flashpoint, and is also home to outgoing eThekwini Mayor James Nxumalo.

Officers have moved in to quell public violence, with reports that several homes in the area had been torched.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Thulani Zwane said that on Sunday night, around 18:00, a 40-year-old woman was shot and killed by unknown suspects in the Fredville area.

The woman was taken to a hospital, where she later succumbed to her injuries.

Zwane said the Inchanga police were investigating a case of murder. No arrests had been made.

On Monday morning, Zwane said the police received information that another person had also been killed in Inchanga.

"People have blocked the roads with burning tyres and stones, protesting about the killing of the woman last night. The situation is tense at the moment and police are deployed in the area to monitor the situation," said Zwane.

A police source, who could not be named, said a woman had been killed on Sunday night.

The source said that the violence on Monday morning, which included another killing and the torching of several homes, had been an act of retaliation. This could not be confirmed at the time of publishing.

Volatile situation

The source said that the area had become too volatile for the eThekwini Metro Fire Department, and that it had withdrawn its firefighters amid for safety reasons.

Community Safety MEC Mxolisi Kaunda was expected to visit the murder scenes on Monday morning, his spokesperson Kwanele Ncalane said.

Kaunda was also expected to meet with the police.

"At this stage, the MEC would prefer to comment after receiving a briefing from the police, but he has been in touch with the acting provincial commissioner since last night," said Ncalane.

News24 previously reported that Ward 4 in Inchanga had been in tumult in the lead-up to local government elections, with claims of political killings prompting a face-off between the ANC and the SACP.

In February, Bongani Hlatshwayo, 38, and Phillip Dlamini, 68, were killed during a public meeting at a sports ground.

The killings deepened divisions between the two tripartite alliance members, with the SA Communist Party pulling out of electoral processes in the province and the ANC Youth League calling for the SACP provincial secretary to step down.

The cases against five people arrested for the killings was still pending.

Nxumalo’s relative, Malombo Nxumalo, who ran as an independent candidate, won the ward.

Read more on:    durban  |  crime

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