Suspect confesses to Ayanda’s killing

2012-07-09 00:00

A MAN linked to the family of 12-year-old Ayanda Sibiya, whose body was found in a water tank last week, has been arrested for murder.

The 32-year-old will appear in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court today.

The Witness was told yesterday that the suspect confessed to the crime on Thursday when questioned by police.

Ayanda’s family found her body two days earlier after an “uncle” claimed to have consulted a sangoma to try and trace her.

This led the family to a water tank in the grounds of a Methodist Church near their home in the Mbutshane area of Sweetwaters.

Police were called in and Lieutenant Jack Haskins of the PMB K9 search unit recovered her body from the 1,2-metre high tank, as angry community watched, with some vowing to avenge her death.

Ayanda had a head wound and bruises on her face.

Her hands and feet were tied up with rope.

She had gone missing from her home on June 22, prompting her family to instantly launch a search.

At the time of her disappearance she left a letter — in her handwriting in English and Zulu — in which she said she wanted to protect her new-born baby sister from “evil spirits”.

The area’s Methodist minister, the Reverend Vuyo Dlamini, said last night it was tragic the church water tank had been used for evil purposes. “We have been told the family are neighbours in our area and this death is a tragedy. Our members are shocked.”

He said the church had no money to fence off its premises and anyone could have had access to the water tank.

The motive for the killing is unknown at this stage.

Captain Thulani Zwane said: “The police will do everything in their power to effectively investigate the circumstances under which the killing took place.

ANC ward councillor for Sweetwaters Simon Sokhela said he was glad that an arrest had been made, but said he could not comment on the suspect’s identity.

Detectives from Plessislaer who made the arrest have made six arrests in connection with six murder cases recently and are proud of their recent successes.

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