Outrage after farmer bludgeons his sangoma 'friend' to death

Fritz Joubert. (Fritz Joubert, Facebook)
Fritz Joubert. (Fritz Joubert, Facebook)

Condolences have been pouring in for traditional healer Anele Hoyana who was bludgeoned to death in a farmhouse in East London at the weekend.

According to Eastern Cape police spokesperson Captain Hazel Mqala, Hoyana was murdered on Saturday by his 45-year-old "friend", farmer Fritz "Majeke" Joubert, whom he had been temporarily staying with, together with his wife and children, on a farm in Geluksdal, Gonubie. 

The Daily Dispatch said Hoyana, 40, was training Joubert to be a sangoma.

It reported a traditional ceremony had been under way at the time.

Joubert was later shot dead by the police.

In bizarre videos posted on his Facebook page in the early hours of Saturday, a sweating Joubert, in a Springbok jersey, gives a tour of his farmhouse and tells the camera he is the chosen one. 

In the videos, Joubert refers to Hoyana as Satan and threatens to punish him. Hoyana is seen holding one of his children. In other videos, he is seen slumped on a chair and then lying on a wooden deck outside with his traumatised wife nearby.

Expressing their outrage on social media, many people could not believe the police had referred to Joubert as Hoyana's friend. Others were disturbed by what appeared to be an unprovoked attack and that someone else on the scene had filmed one of the videos.

One user on Twitter, @siyanathinkosi, said: "The worst part is that Anele didn't realise the danger from the beginning. He kept cool until it was too late."

@therealdineo commented: "Where is the person recording the #AneleHoyana murder? Are they not an accessory? Surely, they must get to the root of all this evil. How many who were around Fritz are exactly like him? Uproot the whole damn thing."

Mqala said the men had been socialising in the early hours of Saturday morning when an argument ensued and escalated into a physical fight on the deck outside the farmhouse.

"The farm owner assaulted his 40-year-old male friend with his fists and a rifle butt, resulting in the victim sustaining severe head injuries," she added.

Joubert had apparently made numerous phone calls asking for help from neighbouring farmers who in turn notified the nearest police stations. 

When the police arrived, they found Hoyana lying on his back with numerous head injuries.

A warrant officer from Bluewater police station entered the house, and Joubert allegedly told him that "nobody is going to leave the farm premises today", said Mqala.

"At that stage, the farm owner had taken his friend's children hostage and locked them in the bathroom. He then requested their mother to return to the house as she was hiding outside fearing for her life."

A constable from the Gonubie police station also arrived on the scene.

"It is alleged the farm owner then locked the door and instructed the police to place their firearms on the table. They did not comply with his instruction."

The Bluewater police officer spoke to Joubert, while his Gonubie counterpart went to the bathroom and rescued the two boys - aged two weeks old and two years old - who were cowering in the bath.

He then took the children outside and handed them over to their mother.

Mqala said Joubert had attacked the Bluewater police officer from behind with his fists and attempted to disarm him.

A shot went off during the struggle and hit the floor. The police officer warned him to stop but he attacked him again and he fired a shot in self-defence.

"… during [the] struggle the bullet from his service pistol entered underneath Joubert's left arm and fatally wounded him," she said. 

The police officer received medical attention after suffering a fractured nose, jaw and injuries to his face.

Firearms and ammunition were confiscated from the scene.

Independent Police Investigative Directorate spokesperson Sontaga Seisa confirmed it was investigating the circumstances surrounding Joubert's death, while the Gonubie police were investigating Hoyana's death.

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