The family of slain activist Loyiso Nkohla says the arrest of his suspected killer has reignited hope that more would be held accountable for his murder.
This after the Hawks on Friday confirmed that they had arrested a 38-year-old over the slaying of Nkohla.
The 40-year-old former Ses'khona People’s Movement leader and former ANC Youth League member was shot and killed at a satellite police station near the Philippi railway station by gunmen who stormed inside.
This as he was about to conduct a meeting concerning the relocation of shack dwellers who built their structures on the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) central railway line.
Nkohla’s widow, Nyameka, said that the arrest was a relief for the family as she did not want her husband’s murder case to go cold and be forgotten.
“It has been an extremely hard six months without him, and I have been praying for a breakthrough in the case.
“As a family we would like to thank everyone who has been supporting us in this mourning process. As much as we feel relieved by the major breakthrough of this case, our interest is in the swift and urgent arrest of the mastermind of this ordeal. This is a bitter-sweet moment as it reopens wounds that I have been trying to plaster over, nevertheless. I am hopeful that the killers of Loyiso will be brought to book,” she said.
Nyameka said that she was forever grateful to the people who have consistently been keeping her and her family strong for the past six months.
“In the meantime, let us allow the justice system to take its course and ensure that justice for Loyiso, my loving husband, prevails,” she said.
Hawks spokesperson Zinzi Hani said that the suspect was arrested on Friday after being positively linked to the crime.
“The suspect has been charged with murder and three counts of attempted murder. This emanates from an incident that happened on April 17.
“The victim was killed in a hail of bullets at Philippi railway station. It is believed that Mabandla was targeted for his role in talks to clear Metrorail's Central Line, where families had built their homes.
“The suspect is due to make his first appearance (today),” she said.
Nkohla’s friend, Andile Lili, said: “I am very happy with the work done by the police. We are hoping that the same suspect, because he was not alone, there were four, we are hoping he leads police to the rest and we want the mastermind to be arrested.
“We will not rest until that criminal is arrested. We will properly celebrate once all the accused are arrested. Loyiso was brutally murdered and his killers should be found. Once we heard this news, we celebrated and we are hoping for more to be arrested.
“What the murderers did is very unfair and I hope they rot in jail.”
Nkohla’s family, political associates, friends, supporters, and various organisations are expected to be at the Athlone Magistrate’s court on Monday.