South Africa - Durban - 17/10/ 2021- The SAPS took statements from the Clare Estate community at the scene where nine people where shot dead. I Tumi Pakkies/African News Agency(ANA)
South Africa - Durban - 17/10/ 2021- The SAPS took statements from the Clare Estate community at the scene where nine people where shot dead. I Tumi Pakkies/African News Agency(ANA)

PICS: Police hunt trio said to have ‘executed’ nine people, including 2 children, in Clare Estate

By Zainul Dawood Time of article published Oct 18, 2021

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DURBAN - POLICE are hunting down three men who shot and killed nine people in Clare Estate, Durban, at the weekend.

Three men, four women and two children were shot execution-style, in the head, inside their homes at Palmiet Road informal settlement zone 1.

Residents, who did not want to be named, said they were woken by screams, banging of metal and shots. The shooting took place between Saturday night and Sunday morning.

The settlement is built on a slope with many pathways between the homes.

Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said detectives attended to three crime scenes.

In the first home, police found the bodies of four adults and two children. They were identified as Sibayanda Nceclani, 40, Bauso Hombakazi, 30, Clifford Moyo, 36 and an unidentified woman. The children were Thandolwethu Mathangana, 6, and 9-year-old Yanga Mathangana.

Mbele said all of them were shot in the head. Police found 9mm cartridges at the scene.

Deceased: Clifford Moyo.

The children’s aunt said they were shocked at what had happened. Yanga attended Palmiet Road Primary School. Moyo, 28, had worked at Jolly Meats in Clare Estate for several years. Staff said they were shocked to hear the news.

Moyo’s brother, Jacob Chuma, said they were trying to piece together what had happened.

“He worked hard. He had family in Johannesburg and Bulawayo. Why was he targeted? We do not know.”

Mbele said police were directed to another informal home a short distance away where two people were found dead. According to the community, one of the deceased was known as Patcha. The other was Fikiswa Shomela, 35. Both were shot in the head.

Deceased: Sphesihle Maphisa

On Sunday morning, the body of Sphesihle Maphisa, 28, was discovered by relatives. He was slumped under a table in his room. His cousin, Vincent Maphisa, said neighbours saw his door was slightly open. When the neighbour called out his name he did not answer so they opened the door and found him dead. Maphisa worked as an electrician.

The community found shoe marks on the doors, leading them to believe that the doors were kicked open while the victims were asleep. A community leader, who declined to be named, said it was difficult to comment because the killers could be among them.

“We are living in fear,” she said.

Police and the forensic team at the crime scene in Clare Estate where nine people where shot dead. I Tumi Pakkies/African News Agency(ANA)

A source in the informal settlement said there was a quarrel between the couples living in the shack before the incident.

Mbele said the motive for the shootings was unknown but said that the three crime scenes were linked. Sydenham police were investigating the murders. No arrests have been made.

She said provincial commissioner Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi would release a statement once he had received a full report on the incident.

On Sunday night, detectives were still at the scene interviewing witnesses and combing the Maphisa crime scene for clues.

Clare Estate Community Policing Forum chairperson Manser Akoo said the shooting has sent shockwaves throughout the community. He was concerned that gunmen were roaming free to do as they please.

The forensic team at the crime scene in Clare Estate where nine people where shot dead. I Tumi Pakkies/African News Agency (ANA)

“Most informal settlements have hardworking people employed at businesses in the area. Criminal elements have entered this settlement and have caused anarchy. We’re confident the police will make inroads and arrest those responsible.”

KZN violence monitor Mary de Haas said more details were needed to establish the motive for the shooting. She said the victims needed to be profiled to establish why they were targeted. She said witnesses also feared for their lives making the police’s task difficult.

“The shooters were well trained to shoot the victims execution-style. It was well planned. Policing informal settlements is difficult with the terrain and illegal electricity connections,” she said.

Daily News

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