ANC member killed

2018-05-17 06:01
PHOTO: FacebookThe ANC Oshabeni Branch Treasurer, Sifiso Cele.

PHOTO: FacebookThe ANC Oshabeni Branch Treasurer, Sifiso Cele.

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POLICE minister Bheki Cele decided enough was enough and intervened in local political killings this week after a second senior branch member of the ANC was gunned down on Monday morning.

Cele addressed media and SAPS at the Margate police station on Tuesday, offering condolences to the affected families and encouragement to SAPS to solve these murders.

The latest killing is of treasurer of the Oshabeni branch of the ANC Lower South Coast region Sifiso Cele was shot in the head four times at his partner’s home in Margate this Monday.

According to police Sifiso was shot by two men who gained entry into his partner, Linky Chemane’s home and demanded cash and cellphones.

It is alleged that the gunmen found Chemane in the living area of the house and demanded cellphones and money from her.

After she handed over her two cellphones and R3 000 they locked her, the domestic worker and her two young children in the bathroom and proceeded with Sifiso to the main bedroom where they killed him.

Chemane’s daughter Mbalenhle Chemane who was in the house during the incident said that they did not hear any screams or protests from Sifiso before the shots were fired.

“Even when they were demanding money and cellphones, he (Sifiso) did not fight back, he held his hands up and responded to their demands calmly,” said Mbalenhle.

Sifiso is the second ANC branch member from the Oshabeni ward to be killed on the South Coast in two weeks as another senior member of the Ward 5 branch in Umzumbe, Nombuso Mqadi was shot dead at her home on April 28.

During his visit at the Margate police station, police minister Cele said the killing of political leaders was a “common thing” in the region.

He said he had assembled a task team to deal specifically with the murders which he said should be deemed as political.

“There is a difference between common criminality and a political murder. In Sifiso’s case it was only after everything was collected (cellphone and money0 from the house that they shot him. So if it was a plain robbery, there was no need to shoot him,” said the police minister.

He said the task team assigned to the murders consisted of Hawks, Crime Intelligence and the Provincial Task Team.

“Until we see someone in an orange uniform then a case has not yet been resolved. We want to trace back and see what we missed and what was done incorrectly in all these cases,” said Cele.

ANC Lower South Coast Regional Secretary Mzwandile Mkhwanazi who was also a close friend of Sifiso’s said the party was still shocked and deeply saddened by the news.

He said as the ANC wished to extend their condolences to the branch members of his ward, the Cele family and the community his ward at large.

“Cele and I were very close since the struggle days. Whenever he had problems he would call me and ask for advice, he was a humble man who loved his family.

It really hurt me to see his mother crying when I visited his family on Monday. She was in pain and asked all the comrades to stop fighting. She urged us to find alternate solutions to our issues. One could tell that she spoke from a place of deep sadness,” said Mkhwanazi.

“We urge the comrades and the community to be calm, we know it angers them to see people being killed so gruesomely. However we urge them to allow the police to do their job,” he said.

Ray Nkonyeni Municipality spokesperson Simon April said the municipality was very concerned by these killings.

“After the recent ruthless murderers of the three men in a tavern in Ward 29 towards the end of April, the brutal murder of Nombuso Mqadi in Frankland in Umzumbe and now this senseless assassination of Sfiso Cele of Oshabeni in Ward 4.

“These murders including the past ones do not augur well for our area in particular and the province in general of which they paint a picture of a cruel and violent society,” said April.

“Sincere condolences to the family and friends of Sfiso Cele and all those who have been affected by these senseless killings.” he said.

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