Philippi volatile after community leader shot for 'protecting' teen's alleged killer
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Cape Town – The Siyahlala informal settlement in Philippi, where 17-year-old slain Amahle Quku lived with her family, remained volatile yesterday after a community leader was shot and wounded, allegedly by angry residents.
They accused him of protecting Amahle’s alleged murderer and rapist.
The 25-year-old, expected to appear in Wynberg Magistrate’s Court today, was handed over to police by community members, which sparked outrage, with irate residents demanding to know why he was turned over to the police and not to them.
Police spokesperson Noloyiso Rwexana said Nyanga police were investigating a case of attempted murder following the shooting of the community leader.
“According to information, a 41-year-old man was shot multiple times (by) suspects who are yet to be identified. The victim was taken to hospital for treatment.
"Police detectives are following up on leads in order to bring the perpetrators to book. The shack (of the community leader) was demolished and a case of malicious damage to property was opened for investigation, with no arrests so far,” she said.
Philippi Community Policing Forum secretary Melikhaya Gadeni said: “The community leader who took the initiative of ensuring the suspect was arrested was shot and seriously wounded by men who approached him on Sunday evening while he was sitting in a car with his brother. His house was also demolished.
"I doubt he will ever come back to the community. Residents believe the suspect will be living his best life in prison while Amahle’s family will never see her again.”
Shocked residents of Albert Luthuli Street in Browns Farm woke up to the grim discovery of Amahle’s naked body at about 7am on Saturday.
The family of the Grade 11 pupil at Sinethemba High School, fondly known by her community as Pretty, learned about her killing after being alerted to pictures of her body circulating on social media.
Police spokesperson Mihlali Majikela said the exact cause of her death was yet to be determined.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the suspect would appear in Wynberg Magistrate’s Court today.
Anyone wishing to assist Amahle’s family with funeral preparations can contact her sister Lusindiso on
0717336720, or alternatively her aunt Pamela on 083 529 9638
The case against child rape accused and senior City official Raphael Martin has been postponed to June 29 for a bail application.
Martin, 54, accused of having raped a 13-year-old girl over a number of years, appeared briefly in the Mitchells Plain Magistrate’s Court yesterday. He is related to the child.
Martin was also kicked out of the Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) Ashley Kriel detachment during 1989.
Police spokesperson Andrè Traut said Martin was arrested on Friday.
City spokesperson Priya Reddy said Martin’s immediate suspension from the City as the sub-council 23 chairperson would be subject to his bail application at his next court appearance.
“The City is considering immediate suspension subject to the bail application. Should the bail application be granted, then the City will serve the employee with immediate suspension proceedings,” said Reddy.
Community organisation Unchain the Plain, which focuses on youth development by distributing sporting equipment in vulnerable communities, said that following an emergency meeting of the executive committee last night, Martin had been suspended as a member with immediate effect.
This was pending the outcome of the criminal investigation and judicial process.
The ANC said while Martin had not been formally part of the ANC in Mitchells Plain since 2013, it was shocked by the allegations.
Double murder accused Ryan Smith also appeared in the Bellville Magistrate's Court yesterday.
He has been charged with the murders of his 27-year-old girlfriend, Altecia Kortjie, and their 7-year-old daughter, Raynecia Kortjie.
Ntabazalila said the matter was postponed to next Monday.
“The State is still opposing the bail application of the accused,” said Ntabazalila.
Western Cape Parliamentary speaker Masizole Mnqasela meanwhile said he hoped police would do a thorough investigation over rape claims against his 17-year-old son Khanyisile.
A number of young women took to social media claiming they were raped and sexually violated by Mnqasela’s son.
Mnqasela, who himself was cleared of rape charges in 2011, said: “As a parent and anti-GBV campaigner I am on record for fighting gender-based violence in this country.
"We hope that the police will do a thorough investigation to get to the bottom of this in order for justice to prevail.
"My family and I are not above the law and as such we will appreciate a swift investigation to get this matter to finalisation.”
Khanyisile is expected to appear in court on July 9 on sexual assault charges.