A Lusikisiki-based District Court prosecutor was murdered in his home in Cradock, leading to the arrest of one suspect and another allegedly committing suicide in front of police officers who had stopped the duo.
The prosecutor was identified as Sivenathi Ralarala (36).
NPA regional spokesperson in the Eastern Cape, Anelisa Ngcakani, said on the evening of 25 September Mdumiseni Mduduzi Mkhize allegedly visited Ralarala at his home on the said evening.
“It is alleged that during the evening Ralarala was at his family home in Cradock when Mkhize arrived and requested to speak to him. Ralarala went outside to speak to him and subsequent to this his family members heard gunshots. They found Ralarala lying on the ground, he died at the scene. The police swiftly commenced with their investigation and gathered that Mkhize and another suspect allegedly used a silver Hyundai as a getaway vehicle. Police located the vehicle the following morning driving along R61 from Mthatha,” she said.
Ngcakani said the vehicle was stopped near Tabase and the police searched it.
“As the two occupants, Mkhize and a female police Sergeant stood outside the vehicle, police heard a gunshot. The police Sergeant had a gunshot wound to the head. It is alleged that she shot herself. She was rushed to hospital but she has since passed away. Police recovered a firearm, a 9 mm pistol with a magazine loaded with nine rounds of live ammunition and one cartridge,” she said.
Provincial police spokesperson colonel Priscilla Naidu confirmed the police officer’s death. Her name has not been released.
Ngcakani said the 45-year-old Mkhize has been charged with murder and possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition.
He appeared at the Cradock Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.
“His case was postponed to 8 October 2021 for formal bail application. The NPA will oppose bail as this is a Schedule 6 offence which means that it falls under the most serious category of offences for purposes of bail."
In an unrelated matter, Komani arrested two juveniles on Thursday with suspected stolen copper cables.
Police spokesperson captain Lariane Jonker said the copper cables were believed to be from a library substation in Mlungisi location and their value is estimated at R250 000.
She said the suspects were handed over to social workers. The acting Chris Hani District commissioner, Brigadier Mabel Magqashela welcomed the arrests and warned the community not to use juveniles to commit crimes.