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Sixteen firearms, 15 swords, ammunition, camouflage clothes and a swastika badge: these were all found after police swooped on a house in Primrose East on Friday, after they received a tip-off from an anonymous source.
Police arrested five white men and a woman. The suspects, aged between 19 and 49, have been charged with the possession of unlicensed firearms and are expected to appear in the Germiston Magistrate’s Court within the week.
In addition, police are looking into possible links between the suspects and the murder of 15-year-old Sibusiso Titimani two weeks ago.
Sibusiso had been walking with a friend through an open field on the afternoon of Saturday, May 19. The field is just over 500m away from his mother’s shack in Primrose informal settlement.
His mother, Thandiwe, had been taking a bath when her son’s friend came to her door shouting hysterically, “Mama ka Sibusiso! Uyashaywa uSibusiso nagmabhunu’ (Sibusiso is being beaten up by the boers).”
Thandiwe ran to the field, where her son was lying with his bleeding head on a cement block. Sibusiso was still alive. “I pulled him to sit up straight and kept shouting his name… He would open his eyes and then close them,” she said.
Sibusiso was taken to Boksburg Hospital before doctors transferred him to Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital, where he later was pronounced dead.
Thandiwe said it wasn’t the first time someone had been assaulted or stabbed in the field.
“From what I hear, it is by white men who say they are taking revenge for Eugene Terre’Blanche,” she added.
“There are whites who are kind and good but these people are evil,” said Thandiwe’s mother, Nosinara, “They stand over here (pointing at bushes in the field) and wait for people to pass before attacking. I came here to cover our child’s blood with soil… how could they do this to our boy?”
Provincial police spokeswoman Pinky Tsyinyane said police were investigating claims of other similar race-related incidents.
“We have received information from the community that the suspects have been terrorising the area as well, following the murder case (Sibusiso’s) that was opened at the station. We want to say to more victims out there that they must come report to us… they must come forward.”
Tsyinyane said the information the police had painted a picture of a group of people who dressed in camouflage and used knives and guns to harass residents of the informal settlement.
On Friday, the weapons were laid out on the ground behind Primrose Police Station, where forensic analysts and investigators processed them for evidence as the suspects stood in line with their backs to the weapons.
When she saw pictures of the suspects, Thandiwe said in a low voice, eyes tearing: “Will these people come bury my son?”
Sibusiso was buried during a small family ceremony on Saturday.
Police have appealed to people with any information relating to crime in the open field in Primrose to contact Captain Deno Davids on 011 776 1600 or 072 997 2997.