Lieutenant-Colonel Koliswa Vani was shot dead at a Mfuleni car wash at the weekend. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)
Lieutenant-Colonel Koliswa Vani was shot dead at a Mfuleni car wash at the weekend. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Family of slain Delft police officer left baffled by shooting

By Okuhle Hlati Time of article published May 18, 2021

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Cape Town – A close family friend of the slain Lieutenant-Colonel Koliswa Vani, shot dead at a Mfuleni car wash at the weekend while off-duty, said they were baffled about who would kill the officer described as “peaceful and kind-hearted”.

Fifty-year-old Vani, from Silversands, was shot twice – in the back and right leg – after three unknown men, who pretended to be customers, opened fire at the business on Sunday, where the officer stationed in Delft had been waiting for her vehicle.

Three others, including Vani's three-year-old grandson, were wounded in the incident at Bardale informal settlement, and were rushed to a nearby hospital for medical treatment.

According to a leaked police document, the suspects approached a man who was washing cars and asked how much it costs to have a car washed.

One of them then pulled out a firearm and fired multiple gunshots at Vani, and the suspects thereafter got into a white Toyota Avanza and fled the scene.

It is alleged that the registration number plates of the suspects vehicle was covered with a page.

Police spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk said cases of murder and attempted murder have been opened for investigation.

A 63-year-old close family friend, who requested not to be named for fear of reprisal, said Vani was like a sister.

“We met in 2016, through her son, who was friends with my grandchild. I grew close with Koliswa and her family. She became a sister to me and we shared everything together. She was planning a trip in June for just the two of us.

“Koliswa’s distraught daughter informed me on Sunday that her mother was shot dead and her son was wounded. I visited the child at the hospital. He was shot in the head and thigh,” the family friend said.

According to them, Vani was a regular customer at the car wash.

“We still don’t know what those people wanted or who they were. Koliswa had a big heart and you would find her always smiling. She lived with her grandchildren, who she loved.”

Provincial acting police commissioner Major General Thembisile Patekile said: “We are saddened and it's a great shock to learn about the killing of our police officer in that manner. These criminals have no respect for the law and we will not rest until an arrest is made.”

Delft community policing forum (CPF) spokesperson Charles George said the community had lost a champion and well-respected woman, who was stationed in the area for close to two decades. Vani always went the extra mile for the community, he added.

Anyone with information on the shooting can anonymously contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111 or SMS Crime Line on 32211.

Cape Times

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