Guards work in fear after colleagues killed

2018-11-22 06:00
Community leader Siyamboleka James at Sweet Homes standing in front of one of the generators from the sitePHOTO: SIYABONGA KALIPA

Community leader Siyamboleka James at Sweet Homes standing in front of one of the generators from the sitePHOTO: SIYABONGA KALIPA

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From what was usually just theft of batteries from a generator and diesel from construction vehicles busy with tarring roads in Sweet Homes, in Philippi, saw two security guards loosing their lives last week.

Community leader Siyamboleka James said the criminals usually come for diesel and batteries, but this time they did not steal any.

“I think they thought they will get guns from the security (guards)this time, which is why they shot and killed them,” he said.

He said the security company previously contracted for the project withdrew its services, citing safety issues as a concern.

James said he spoke to the community so they can help to look after the project, because the company that is making the roads now has to spend money to replacing the stolen batteries and diesel.

He said there are other forces that seemed to be behind these criminal activities.

“It is strange because the community knows that this project is meant to help them, which is why I think the criminal activities are politically motivated,” James alleged.

He added that when the project was introduced, everyone was happy about it but now it seems not everyone is happy about it.

Mayco member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services and Energy Xanthea Limberg said the guards worked for the third security company hired to protect the site and that the previous two were unwilling to continue working in the area due to criminals violently targeting the development.

“It is unforgivable that a project made to ensure that the development meant to improve the lives of the community is being targeted. The City extends deepest condolences to the families, friends and co-workers of these men,” said Limberg.

Nyanga Police station commander Brigadier Vuyisile Ncata said they are still investigating the matter.

He said the community is not helping because no one is coming up with any information that may lead to an arrest.

“No one has been arrested so far and I invite anyone with information to come forward,” he said.

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