Two vigilante killings after Limpopo woman and girl murdered in separate attacks

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Police have said communities should not take the law into their own hands.
Police have said communities should not take the law into their own hands.
Roger Sedres, Gallo Images
  • Two men have been killed in separate vigilante attacks in Limpopo.
  • One victim was accused of murdering a 14-year-old girl.
  • The second attack was in connection with the murder of a 29-year-old woman.

Two men have been killed in separate vigilante attacks in Limpopo.

The men were attacked after a woman and a child were murdered in unrelated incidents.

READ | 17 men appear in North West court for alleged vigilante attack that claimed two lives

On Thursday night, a man was killed in Mookgopong after the murder of a 14-year-old girl.

"On Thursday night, the body of a 14-year-old girl, identified as Palesa Mosoloke, was found inside a shack at Extension 8 informal settlement. The body did not have any visible injuries, and it is suspected that the victim might have been strangled. Police are also investigating the possibility that the child might have been raped," said police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo.

Preliminary investigations revealed that a man from eSwatini, only known as Mhlongo, entered the girl's home. He had disappeared, said Mojapelo.

"The police were still busy with investigations when they received information about the [eSwatini] national, who was found assaulted and stoned and his body set alight on Saturday at about 00:45. The victim later succumbed to his injuries on arrival at the hospital. Preliminary investigations indicated that the deceased was suspected by community members of being involved in the rape and murder of the 14-year-old girl," said Mojapelo.

In the second incident, the body of a 29-year-old woman was found in a street in Mapayeni village on Friday night, said Mojapelo.

"Preliminary investigations revealed that the deceased, identified as Tiyiselani Precious Rikhotso, was hacked and stabbed to death by an unknown suspect while walking to the nearby store on Friday. The suspect then fled the scene," said Mojapelo.

The following day, villagers allegedly hunted down a man they suspected of murder and killed him.

"The killings of a 14-year-old girl at Mookgopong and a woman in Giyani are extremely deplorable as the country is engaged in the rigorous fight against gender-based violence. The brutal killings of the two men apparently suspected of being responsible for the two murders are equally condemned as these incidents are tantamount to vigilantism," Limpopo police commissioner Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe said.

"Community members must desist from taking the law into their own hands and must instead work with the police by providing information that can assist in apprehending the suspects," Hadebe said.

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