Pensioner dies of fright in Post Office queue

2008-03-04 00:00

A PENSIONER collapsed and died of fright after a gun accidentally went off inside the central post office in Pietermaritzburg while people were queuing for grants yesterday.

A security guard dropped his .38 special revolver and it went off — scaring the pensioners. Nora Mazibuko (68) from Bulwer collapsed and died on the scene.

Terrified senior citizens scrambled for safety.

Police spokesman Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram said the bullet did not hit anyone.

Mazibuko’s daughter, Philisiwe Mazibuko (23), who was waiting for her mother outside, said the elderly woman died immediately.

“I went inside soon after the sound and I found my mother lying down. She had stopped breathing, it happened so suddenly, I couldn’t believe she was gone,” she said.

Paramedics were called, but Mazibuko was already dead. The exact cause of her death has not been determined.

“At this stage an inquest will be carried out to determine the exact cause of Mazibuko’s death and a case of negligent discharging of a firearm is being investigated against the security officer,” said Budhram.

“The gun fell out of a pocket in the the guard’s bulletproof jacket on to the floor and discharged a gunshot”.

Temperatures reached 36 degrees in Pietermaritzburg yesterday and Mazibuko had been waiting in the long queue in the scorching sun outside for more than five hours before finally reaching the door to the post office.

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