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Courthouse killing condemned

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Five IFP members were released after the High Court in Pietermaritzburg found that charges of murder and attempted murder could not be proved.

Durban - An Inkatha Freedom Party member was shot dead outside the Ntuzuma Magistrate's Court on Monday, in full view of the police and television cameras.

IFP councillor Mdu Nkosi said the shots were fired while he was giving an interview following the appearance of four men in connection with the shooting of an IFP supporter a little more than a week ago at Durban's KwaMashu hostels.

Nkosi identified the IFP supporter who was killed as Siya Dlamini.

“I was giving an interview when the e.tv journalist warned me and then I heard two shots,” said Nkosi.

According to Nkosi, a National Freedom Party councillor in the eThekwini Municipality was arrested and bundled into a police van.

The NFP's provincial secretary Vusi Khoza told Sapa he had been informed of the councillor's arrest.

Police spokesman Colonel Jay Naicker said in a statement that Dlamini sustained one fatal bullet wound. He said a suspect had been arrested and a pistol seized. This would be sent for ballistic testing.

He provided no details about the suspect, but said he would appear in the Ntuzuma Magistrate’s Court soon.

Nkosi asked: “Who will protect us if this happens right in front of the police?”

Three people accused of shooting dead Cebisile Shezi, 31, appeared in the court on Monday.

Bonginhlanhla Gwala, 33, Bhungu Mgezeni Gwala, 55, and Malusi Sibusiso Ncengwa, 24, would bring a bail application on October 17.

Shezi, who was wearing an IFP T-shirt, was shot dead near the Thembalihle railway station, in KwaMashu, shortly after Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa addressed IFP supporters at a sports field in A-section, KwaMashu, where the hostels were located.

Celimpilo Khayelihle Gwala, 25, appeared in the Ntuzuma Magistrate's Court on Friday in connection with Shezi's murder. Gwala would bring a bail application on October 19.

All four had been charged with murder. Three of them were also charged with attempted murder.

Shortly before Shezi's killing a bullet grazed a woman's face. Police took her to hospital.

The area had been tense since the abduction and killing of IFP councillor Themba Xulu, allegedly by five men pretending to be police officers from the Pinetown police station. No one had been arrested in connection with this crime.

In a statement KwaZulu-Natal provincial police commissioner Lt-Gen Mmamonnye Ngobeni said: “One cannot fathom why despite our clampdown on political killings in this province we continue to have incidents like this.”

Democratic Alliance spokesman Dean Macpherson said he was concerned about the shooting.

KwaZulu-Natal legislature deputy speaker Mtholephi Mthimkhulu condemned the murder and said: “It has come to a situation where we, as KZN legislature, can no longer keep quiet about these issues. We are extremely concerned and worried at the escalating incidents of politically-motivated killings in this province.” - Sapa


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