File picture: Independent Media
Cape Town - Residents of Marikana informal settlement in Philippi say the necklacing of three suspected robbers was intended to bring the government’s attention to the spike in crime in their area.

The three men, aged between 20 and 30 years, were set alight, allegedly by residents, yesterday morning. They were believed to have been among a group of criminals terrorising the community, especially women, when they go to work and return home.

Residents who spoke on condition of anonymity said their complaints to the police were not attended to.

Police spokesperson FC van Wyk said a murder docket was opened.

One victim had been identified. “It is alleged that they were beaten by the members of the community,” said Van Wyk.

Nolubabalo Sesant, aunt of Siyabonga Ngqabeni, 21, thought to be one of the dead men, said residents told her one of the men was Ngqabeni.

“It’s very painful that he had to die like that. He was not a criminal. We can’t be 100% sure if it is him because the person was burnt beyond recognition and we will wait for tests to confirm,” she said.

Ngqabeni’s neighbour, Vuyokazi Mzalazala, said on Monday night a man with a loudhailer called on the community to come out of their houses and look for criminals who were terrorising the area. 

“In the morning I heard they took the three men from a shack and assaulted them before they set them alight.

“Yes, he was smoking drugs but he was not a criminal. If anyone has committed crime police are there to investigate.”

Anyone with information about the incident is requested to contact Crime Stop on 0860010111 or SMS Crime Line 32211.

Cape Times