Pretoria - The boyfriend of a Tshwane metro police constable has allegedly confessed to murdering her and torching her body in a field in Limpopo.
A police source close to the investigation said William Ramotshela told of how he killed Constable Mable Dimakatso Peete, 29. Her burnt body is said to have been only recognisable from the lower torso because of the extent of the burns on the upper body.
“He confessed to strangling her and setting her body alight in the Ga-Matlala village in Limpopo. Officers went to the place he spoke about,” said a police officer who cannot be named as he is not authorised to speak to the press.
Peete was last seen on November 19, when she left her Soshanguve home.
She had indicated that she would be going to the house of Ramotshela in Olievenhoutbosch to drop off keys and collect some of her belongings.
The Peete family was notified on Tuesday of the latest development in the investigations.
The police did not want to confirm that the body they had seen at a mortuary in Limpopo was that of the constable.
Women from the ANC Women’s League and Tshwane metro police officers went to visit the family to convey their support and to take them to Limpopo to identify the body.
Peete’s mother, Margaret, was devastated when she was told the news, and collapsed.
A spokeswoman for the ANC Women’s League in Gauteng, Jacqui Mofokeng, said the case had many similarities to that of Constable Frances Rasuge who disappeared in August 2004. Eventually Rasuge’s boyfriend, WIlliam Nkuna, was arrested, convicted of murder and sentenced to life in jail without her body having been found.
Rasuge’s remains were only recovered this year, under the foundation of a house on Nkuna’s property.
Mofokeng said such killings could no longer be tolerated in communities and something needed to be done.
It was disturbing that Gauteng had the highest incidence of women abuse in the country and alarming because most of these crimes happened in Tshwane, she said. “Why do so many women get killed in Tshwane?
“Statistics show that most abusers, rapists and killers are found in Tshwane. Communities need to be taught that we cannot go on like this. This must stop.”
The MEC for Community Safety in Gauteng, Faith Mazibuko, commended police on their sterling work. Violence against women is a serious problem which needed to be addressed, she said.
Mazibuko said if partners no longer loved each other, “they should leave each other. No parent wants to see such a thing happening. She was building a house for her mother. Now this has happened. It is really sad”.
The metro police commander for the central region that includes the CBD, Vusi Nkuna, said on Tuesday that investigations were still progressing. Police did not want to speculate or give away information that might jeopardise their case. He could not be drawn to confirm that the body the family was taken to see in Limpopo was that of Peete. DNA results would reveal the identity.
Police spokesman Warrant Officer Lolo Mangena also said police could not say if it was Peete’s body. “We are awaiting DNA results.”
Her boyfriend was being held at a police station in Limpopo as investigations continued, said Mangena.
In November last year, police found the charred remains of 24-year-old Tshwane metro police officer Kefilwe Claudia Rapudi in the boot of her burnt-out car in a field along the Sefako Makgato Road (Zambezi Road) near Cullinan.
She had been missing for several days. A colleague of Rapudi, Lloyd Maleswene, who was romantically linked to her, later allegedly confessed to killing her. He was arrested after confessing to a Zion Christian Church (ZCC) priest a week after Rapudi’s remains were found.
The priest handed over the suspect, 27, to the Mankweng police station in Limpopo before he was transferred to Pretoria where he appeared in court.
His case has since been referred to the Pretoria High Court where he is facing a murder charge. In one of her last Facebook updates, Rapudi indicated that she was pregnant and in an abusive relationship