District fireman found shot near his car

2016-02-10 11:37


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Pietermaritzburg - An uMgungundlovu District fireman was murdered in Mooi River while on duty during his night shift on Saturday.

Blessing Mnikathi (32), a watch commander for the district, was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds near his car in Bruntville township in Mooi River in what police believe was a hijacking attempt.

“The family of uMgungundlovu is still shocked after receiving horrific news of the incident that took place in Mooi River” said uMgungundlovu District Mayor Yusuf Bhamjee.

The district municipality’s spokesperson Mbali Ndlovu said Mnikathi was attacked when he went to nearby shops to buy refreshments during a break in his shift.

Police said the incident took place at around 10.15 pm on Saturday.

“It is alleged that he was inside his vehicle with a female companion when unknown gunmen approached them and demanded the car keys. Mooi River police are investigating a case of murder and no arrest has been made at this stage,” said police spokesperson Major Thulani Zwane.

Mnikathi joined the Midlands Fire Department in 1998 as a firefighter and was transferred to the uMgungundlovu District fire station in 2003. He was stationed at the Howick fire station at that time.

In 2010, Mnikathi was promoted to watch commander and was then based at the Mooi River fire station.

“An uMgungundlovu delegation and other senior officials visited the family on Monday to pay their respects and give their condolences to the Mnikathi family,” said Ndlovu.

The district will host a memorial service tomorrow at the Mpophomeni Main Hall. The funeral service will be held on Saturday, February 13 at the Mpophomeni Community Hall at 10 am.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  murder  |  dead  |  shot

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