Young hero killed while defending street children

2009-07-21 00:00

A YOUNGSTER was stabbed and killed while defending street children from robbers in Pietermaritzburg on Sunday evening.

Nhlanhla Bhengu (20), a resident of the Khan Road informal settlement, died from multiple stab wounds in his back after he intervened during a robbery on the Chota Motala off-ramp.

He tried to stop a robbery on two street kids and the robbers turned on him and stabbed him with broken bottles and a knife.

Bhengu was on his way home with friends when he went out of his way to help the homeless children.

Police spokesman Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram said Bhengu was on his way home when he saw the robbery.

“He immediately went to their assistance and intervened.” He said one of the alleged robbers had a knife and two of them were armed with broken bottles.

Bhengu’s father, Bongani Bhengu, said he was devastated by the loss.

He said his son had made friends with the street children because he could relate to their situation.

“I don’t know how to feel. I am numb, he was my only son, he was my hope.

“He did not believe people should be treated badly because they are homeless.

“He had grown up to be a responsible man, he helped me a lot in the house.” Bhengu was employed at a shop in Raisethorpe.

Two suspects in Bhengu’s murder were quickly captured. Immediately after the incident, the police followed information and arrested one of them in Masukwane informal settlement.

A second suspect was brought to the police by his father yesterday morning.

Budhram said more arrests are imminent.

The two suspects, aged between 21 and 23, are expected to appear in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court shortly.

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