A day after arriving in Cape Town on honeymoon, a British woman went into Gugulethu with her husband, apparently to experience the nightlife late on Saturday, and was murdered in a suspected hijacking.
The MEC for Finance, Tourism and Economic Development, Alan Winde, said Anni Dewani, 28, and Shrien Dewani, 30 had arrived on Friday on honeymoon. They had been staying at the Cape Grace Hotel.
The hotel would not confirm this.
“They went to a function in Somerset West and came back (on Saturday night),” Winde said. “This is where information is a bit sketchy, but it appears that on their way back at about 10pm they suddenly decided to stop in Gugulethu.
“The wife wanted to have a look around to see what the nightlife was like … It was the wrong place at the wrong time. I am shocked to the core.”
The Cape Town driver and the woman’s husband appear not to have been injured.
Some of the husband’s relatives, who are from the Eastern Cape, have travelled to Cape Town to be with him.
By late on Sunday night, no one had been arrested.
Police spokesman Andre Traut said the couple were in a Volkswagen Sharan, which was being driven by what he would say only was a shuttle service operator.
He said the car was stationary at the corners of NY 108 and NY 112 in Gugulethu, close to the Barcelona informal settlement, when, at about 11pm, two men armed with guns approached it and told the driver to get out. The driver did so and the gunmen got into the car and drove off with the couple, Traut said.
The husband was left about an hour later in Harare, Khayelitsha. He flagged down a motorist, who took him to the Harare police station to report what had happened.
Traut said an extensive search was launched for the woman and the hijacked car.
The car was found soon afterwards in Litha Park, Khayelitsha.
The woman was dead on the back seat. A post-mortem would be held to determine what caused her death, Traut said.
He declined to answer questions about how she died or about the incident, including whether anything had been stolen from the couple.
Hours after the car was found, a crowd gathered yesterday to watch as forensic experts examined it. Blood seeped beneath the passenger door behind the driver’s seat.
Residents who lived close by said the area was quiet at night.
“It was quiet,” said a woman, who declined to be named, saying she was afraid as the gunmen had not been arrested.
“We didn’t hear anything last night. We would have heard if this lady was shot. We didn’t even hear screaming. She must have been killed somewhere else and her body left here
“This is terrible. We live in fear here. This is sad because it’s someone from far away. But this could have been my child.”
British High Commission spokesman Gary Benham said he was aware of the woman’s murder.
“We are offering consular assistance.”
Benham said no further information about the couple would be released.
The MEC for Community Safety, Albert Fritz, said he had heard about a second hijacking involving a Cape Town couple in the Khayelitsha area. It appeared they were not injured, but he was struggling to get details of the hijacking, he said.
Fritz instructed police to mobilise resources so arrests could be made in connection with both cases.
Anyone with information about the attack involving the British tourists or who may know the whereabouts of the culprits should call the investigating officer, Riaan Theron, at 082 463 8706 or Crime Stop at 08600 10111.
Information about the second hijacking should be reported to the Crime Stop number.
firstname.lastname@example.org- Cape Times