Killing of Pretoria doctor bemoaned

2012-01-30 19:20

Johannesburg - The killing of a Pretoria-based dermatologist at the weekend was widely bemoaned on Monday.

The Dermatology Society of SA said the murder of Dr John Moche, 41, in a hijacking, was a huge blow to the medicine industry.

"His untimely death cuts off a great future and will be recorded as another tragic loss for South Africa," said the society's president Robert Weiss.

The SA Medical Association (Sama) and the National Education, Health, and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu) also expressed shock at Moche's death.

Moche, a dermatologist at Steve Biko Academic Hospital, was shot and killed by hijackers on Friday night.

According to weekend reports, two armed men approached Moche who was sitting in his car outside a townhouse complex in Viljoen Street, Pretoria.

Country in need of specialist doctors

One of the men shot him in the chest. They fled with his Range Rover. It was found abandoned in Atteridgeville.

Sama chairperson Dr Norman Mabasa said: "The killing of Dr John Moche... is yet another sign that as South Africans we still remain held hostage by criminals. This time the criminals have hit where it hurts most, robbing us of our own and robbing the country of a scarce skill."

Nehawu said Moche's death was a great loss, particularly at a time when the country was in desperate need of specialist doctors.

This was echoed by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of SA (Denosa) which said crime was holding an already burdened health sector to ransom.

"This incident underlines that government needs to act swiftly in the fight against crime as it has once more robbed not only the medical fraternity but the entire country", Denosa general secretary Thembeka Gwagwa said.

The Gauteng health department said it was shocked by the murder. Health MEC Ntombi Mekgwe and department head Nomonde Xundu sent their condolences to Moche's family.

Moche was the author and co-author of several papers and was involved in teaching.

  • Judith - 2012-01-30 19:48

    This could have been my brother. He is also a specialist and drives a range rover. He has also studied for many years to become the professional that his is. He also has a wife and children to take care of and all of us would be devastated if we lost him to a senseless murder like this. My heart goes out to his family and all his associates. All the lives he touched through the VSSA, as well.

      Boer - 2012-01-30 20:50

      Tha'ts why we left the Country. Cause of bullsh-t like this. I feel sorry for his family and I hope they catch these barbaric ruthless killers. If it goes on the way it does at the moment the brain drain's just gonna get bigger and bigger. Thanks TO THE USELESS ANC.

      John - 2012-01-31 06:09

      I hope police gets to the real reasons of assassination of Dr. John Moche. That hijacking smels as "setup" like many others where "color was not a match". Who was behind this? Who gets a car with force to abandon after 10-15km?.......We need those answers as the family of the victim.Was Dr. Moche on the way of someone? My cincere condolences to the family of Dr. Moche

      Sydney - 2012-01-31 06:55

      @John, abandonment of a stolen vehicle is a standard tactic since the advent of satellite tracking. The criminals abandon the vehicle and then watch it from a distance. If it is not recovered after a day or two they proceed to either strip it or move it over the border.

      John - 2012-01-31 07:28

      @Sydney Agree with satellite tracking.No doubt that "transmitter" as such was present in the vehicle for security and insurance purposes. The only problem is that no one will publish any offical information of the recovery rate and those devices vary between technology and asociated services. Some of them are upon activation (alarm), others requre call to control center...but lets not go off-topic. You making a good point here...who will steal a vehicle with tracking device and expect police and/or tow-truck not to recover from the scene? Sydney, If life was spared becouse of side mirror or bumper .....words will not be enough to express myself.

  • Grant - 2012-01-30 19:49

    "Nehawu said Moche's death was a great loss, particularly at a time when the country was in desperate need of specialist doctors." Yeah, I mean COME ON!! Can't they just murder some regular GP's instead!?

  • Derek - 2012-01-30 23:54

    (This time the criminals have hit where it hurts most, robbing us of our own.) Is it only me who picks up a hint of racism in the way this statement is worded? Can i ask all black people who read this to let me know if they felt more anger when they read about this murder than they did when they read about the farmer who got murdered. And can I ask all white people if they felt more anger when they read about the farmer than when they read about this doctor. Please be truthful. lets find out just how much hatred there is. I really hope I'm wrong about the results Thanks

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