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Family want answers for relative’s death in Mayville which sparked protests, access roads blocked to the area

The family of a man killed by police in Mayville say police are supposed to arrest bad guys and not kill them.

Protesters from Mayville blockaded the roads in the area with rocks, tree branches and rubbish bins after a community member was shot dead on Friday and three people were arrested. Picture: Doctor Ngcobo/African News Agency(ANA)

Published Mar 15, 2022

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DURBAN - THE family of a man who was allegedly killed by police in Cato Crest on Friday, said they are angry and are demanding to know why he was killed.

Siyabonga Manqele, 38, who was allegedly shot dead by police, had been asking why his girlfriend was being arrested when the police allegedly opened fire on him.

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Manqele’s murder comes after Cato Crest residents blocked roads with burning tyres and stones, protesting against the arrest of four suspects in connection with vigilante killings that took place in January.

A family member, who cannot be named for fear of victimisation, said he hated police officers because of how his brother was killed. The family member said the police, who were wearing balaclavas and driving a vehicle without number plates, had arrested Manqele’s girlfriend and left young children unsupervised.

“When Manqele arrived and asked why his girlfriend was arrested, the police did not answer, but opened fire. When he tried to run away, he was shot in the back. I really do not understand, police are supposed to arrest bad guys and not kill them,” he said.

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Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said that on Friday, the man’s girlfriend had been arrested by an unknown policeman. The man then confronted the policeman to ask why his girlfriend was being arrested. The officers wanted to arrest him and he fled.

“The police then fired shots towards him, injuring him from the back. One entry wound was in the back and exited in the front. An R-5 rifle cartridge and one stun grenade canister were found at the scene.

“The matter is still under investigation. Four suspects were arrested by the same team,” said Mbele.

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A community member, who also did not want to be named, said it was a sad day when a man was killed and nobody said anything. “Manqele had no weapon when he was killed. All we want to know as the community is why this man was killed. This man was killed in front of his children, where are these policemen coming from?”

Speaking about Friday’s incident, he said that when they heard gunshots they all went outside to see what was happening, but they quickly realised that it was too dangerous as “the policemen were not scared to open fire on anyone who showed his face”.

Spokesperson for the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid), Lizzy Suping, said the police watchdog was gathering information about the matter so that investigations may carry on. “Ipid has been informed about the incident and we are gathering information so that investigations can continue,” said Suping.

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