Police have launched a manhunt after seven people were shot and killed in Qunu, outside Mthatha, last night.
The shooting incident occurred around 23:40 on February 1, according to police information.
The deceased, four men and three women, have been identified as Mphathiswa Mdingane (47), Nkululeko Ncedani (31), Sakhele Ncedani (27) and Siphelo Ngalo (27).
The three women who perished during the shooting have been identified as Sihle Khayingana (29), Sazenathi Saphethu (22) and another 22-year-old woman Afika, whose surname is yet to be established.
The seven deceased are not members of the same family as previously reported.
In another unrelated incident, three people - an elderly woman (62), her daughter (44) and a grandson (13) were shot and killed by unknown suspects around 20:00 last night.
Both shooting incidents took place in areas under the Bityi policing precinct.
“Provincial police commissioner, Lieutenant General Nomthetheleli Mene condemns the senseless killings that took place in the OR Tambo District last night,” said police spokesperson Brigadier Tembinkosi Kinana.
“In the first incident at about 20:00, unknown suspects entered a homestead in Thantseka location and fatally shot an elderly woman (62) and her 13-year-old grandson. It is alleged that they then proceeded to the second house and shot and killed a 44-year-old woman. The deceased was the daughter of the elderly woman.”
Kinana said the motive for the senseless attack was unknown at this stage.
“In a second unrelated incident, it is alleged that on Wednesday, February 1 at about 23:40, unknown gunmen entered a rondavel in Qunu and opened fire on seven people (four men and three women) between the ages 32 and 46 years old. All seven were fatally wounded. The circumstances surrounding the incident are under investigation. As the investigation is at an early stage, it has not yet been established whether the two incidents are linked,” Kinana added.
Police have appealed to anyone with information that could lead to the arrest of the suspects to contact the Station Commander of SAPS Bityi, Lieutenant Colonel Lindile Maqungwana on 079 696 0708.
A police task team has been set-up to track, trace and arrest the culprits involved in both incidents.
Seven family members were gunned down in the same Tantseka locality in November last year.
Police have since arrested seven suspects in connection with the November shooting.