City vip guard slain

2017-11-09 14:00
The crime scene where Mhlabunzima Bruce Mngoma (30), the bodyguard of Msundizi's speaker, was mowed down in a hail of bullets in Mbanjwa Road, Caluza, yesterday morning.

The crime scene where Mhlabunzima Bruce Mngoma (30), the bodyguard of Msundizi's speaker, was mowed down in a hail of bullets in Mbanjwa Road, Caluza, yesterday morning. (Ian Carbutt)

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The bodyguard of Msunduzi’s Speaker was shot and killed in a hail of bullets while inside his Msunduzi-marked vehicle in Caluza Wednesday morning.

Mhlabunzima Bruce Mngoma (30), the bodyguard to Msunduzi Speaker Jabu Ngubo, was killed when two men allegedly approached his vehicle and fired more than 20 gunshots before fleeing.

The attack has raised fears that the suspected hit may be linked to ongoing political violence in the province, but the motive for the killing could not be confirmed on Wednesday.

According to sources, Mngoma had gone to a house in Caluza he visited often to have his car washed.

However, on Wednesday morning when Mngoma climbed back into his clean, freshly washed car, two men approached him on foot and began firing at the car with what was believed to be pistols.

Plessislaer police spokesperson Captain Musa Ntombela said Mngoma was shot multiple times, all over his body.

Bleeding profusely, Mngoma was rushed to a nearby hospital where he later died from his injuries.

When The Witness arrived at the scene, a number of curious onlookers had gathered near the yellow police cordon.

Mngoma’s car was parked at the roadside near the house where his car was washed with all four doors open. There were several bullet holes in the driver’s door.

Police had marked the bullet casings with yellow tags that were all close to each other and a patch of dried blood caked the area where he had been shot.

A bystander, who declined to be named as he said he feared for his life, told The Witness that one moment the area was quiet and then he suddenly heard gunshots ring out.

“I ran to see what was going on. I saw two men standing at the window of the car firing shots at another man inside the vehicle.

“After shooting him, they took the man’s gun and began running.

“Then I noticed the man [Mngoma] lying half in the car with his head resting on the road,” said the bystander.

“As they were running away, I moved towards the car and saw the man had been shot multiple times in his stomach and head.”

The brave bystander said he began following the two gunmen at a distance until they reached a nearby bridge half a kilometre away where there was a car waiting for them. They then sped off.

He said a private car drove the injured bodyguard to hospital.

Mngoma was later pronounced dead from the multiple gunshot wounds he had sustained.

Another bystander who also did not want to be named, said he was busy installing a window at a nearby house when he heard the gunshots.

He said as soon as he heard the shots, he ran outside and saw blood on the side of the car door.

As he got closer to the scene, he saw Mngoma had been shot. “There was blood everywhere,” said the man.

He said Mngoma was dressed in jeans and a white shirt, which was covered in blood. Mngoma was unconscious.

An acquaintance of Mngoma, who wished to remain anonymous for his own protection, said he had been washing a car down the street when he heard “over 20 gunshots”.

“I saw two men running down the road towards the bridge but I was standing at a distance.

“I saw Bruce in the car. He looked like he was struggling to breathe and had no energy. I am feeling very nervous after this,” said the acquaintance.

“He was a good guy. He was always helpful and friendly. He was someone you could trust,” he said.

Ntombela said the motive for the killing is unknown at this stage and that the police would do all in their power to make a speedy arrest.

Msunduzi municipal spokesperson Thobeka Mafumbatha said the City “is saddened by the sudden passing” of Mngoma.

She said Msunduzi Mayor Themba Njilo and “the entire council of Msunduzi would like to extend its condolences to the family and friends of the deceased”.

“He was a very dedicated and professional employee who will always be remembered,” said Mafumbatha.

“We would like to appeal to the public to remain calm.

“He was shot during the day at kwaCaluza. At this moment events leading to his death are unknown and we will allow the police to conduct their investigation.

“We would like to appeal to the public to work with the police and offer any information they might have that would lead to the arrest of the perpetrators.

“We call upon the people of Pietermaritzburg to pray and support the family and his friends during this period,” she said.

Also read: Guard shot at before
Read more on:    crime  |  pietermaritzburg  |  political killings

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